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Headcount in key areas was up 50%.

Quantifying Balyasny's big hedge fund hiring last year

As we reported last week, hedge fund Balyasny Asset Management (BAM) did quite a bit of hiring in 2022. Now that the BAM has released its annual investor letter, we can put a number on the additions. 

At the end of 2022, Balyasny had 466 analysts globally, a 47% increase on the previous year. It had 160 portfolio managers deploying capital across all its strategies, up from 116 the previous year. It had seven new partners, in addition to the 14 it had previously. And it had 450 people working across technology and data roles. 

The expansion comes as multi-strategy funds like Citadel, Millennium, Balyasny, ExodusPoint and Point72 increasingly dominate the hedge fund market, both in terms of assets under management and headcount. ExodusPoint, for example, added 36 portfolio managers in 2022, including 12 in the second half of the year when hiring is often quieter.

Multi-strategy platforms are expected to experience another inflow of talent after US banks' bonuses are paid. While traders in banks are having their bonuses crimped (Deutsche Bank possibly excepted) as a result of poor performance in investment banking divisions, some multi-strategy funds are having an excellent year. Citadel, for example, made a 38% return on its assets under management last year. The Financial Times says the resulting $16bn in profit for clients is the most made by a hedge fund, ever.

Balyasny's returns were more diminutive: its Atlas Enhanced fund gained 9.7%, but it nonetheless spent much of 2022 recruiting talent into strategies like macro and systematic equities as it diversified away from its historic fundamental equities focus. Recruitment is expected to continue in 2023. 

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AUTHORSarah Butcher Global Editor

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