Hedge fund Balyasny is diversifying, and hiring
Three weeks ago, when most people were winding down for Christmas, Balyasny Asset Management (BAM), the multi-strategy hedge fund, held an investor day. It was its first since 2017, and was something of a milestone. BAM has changed a lot in five years.
When BAM was founded by Dmitry Balyasny, Scott Schroeder and Taylor O'Malle in 2001, its focus was fundamental investing and long/short equities trading. After diversifying its strategy, this is no longer the case - at the December investor day, the fund revealed that more than half of its $17bn in assets under management are now spread across other strategies, including early stage investing, commodities, commodities and macro.
Macro was the firm's top performing strategy in 2022. Five of the seven people promoted to partner at Balyasny last week were in the macro team, and by our count, the firm made at least 50 macro hires last year. They included Jon Sun, the former New York head of linear rates trading at Bank of America, who joined in November.
The fund has been building-out its commodities team, adding Dan Deighton, Goldman Sachs' former global head of commodity index and agricultural products trading in September. And while it's still active in equities trading, it's been pivoting in favor of systematic rather than fundamental trading, adding people like Chuting Ji, who joined from BAML's central risk desk in November.
There are already signs that last year's recruitment rush will continue in 2023. Balyasny plans to make an aggressive moves into systematic equities and commodities this year, as well as growing the data and technology teams that it also expanded dramatically in 2022. Recruits since the New Year include: Thomas Ober, a senior quant from Bank of America; Vedat Zeren, an FX derivatives trader who spent nearly a decade at Citi; and David Gibson and Tseno Tselkov, two quants who come from their own firm, Symbiosis Capital.
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