Hedge Fund Performance Stats: The Renaissance Medallion Mystique Persists

by: Market Folly

Bloomberg had an interesting graphic up depicting returns from some other prominent hedge funds for 2009. There is one caveat though: Their numbers were as of October 31st. So, keep that in mind when viewing. This comes after we posted our annual hedge fund performance numbers post for 2009 where we've already detailed how many prominent hedge funds fared last year. (Click to enlarge)

What's interesting here is we see Bloomberg's estimate for Jim Simons' secretive fund, Medallion. This quant fund at Renaissance Technologies is not open to outside investors and has garnered RenTec's highest returns. Medallion had a stellar 2008, finishing up over 80%. They did well in 2009 it looks like as well, as Bloomberg estimates they were up 38% and made $1.1 billion through the first ten months of 2009.

RenTec's other fund, RIEF, is a contrast to Medallion in two major ways. Firstly, RIEF accepts investments from outsiders while Medallion does not. Secondly, RIEF's performance has been quite lackluster when compared to that of Medallion. However, one does need to keep in mind that each fund is pursuing a different strategy and as such they are not comparable. Their RIEF fund had a rough 2009 due to the large swings in 'junk' stocks and was amongst the worst hedge fund performers when we last checked on it back in August.

So, their Medallion fund had a solid year while RIEF had a rough 2009. Overall, it is just intriguing to see estimates for Medallion. This fund is closely guarded and has an aura of mystique as it is often talked about for it's stellar returns. As we detailed previously, founder Jim Simons' was set to retire from the firm he founded at the end of 2009.

Check out our list of 2009 hedge fund performances for further data.

Original article