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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A TV reporter gambles, and loses, on running a hedge fund by DealBook with Andrew Ross Sorkin FROM International Herald Tribune

Do you remember a time, only a short while ago, when virtually anybody could
start a hedge fund? It seemed so easy: Billions of dollars were being thrown
around like confetti, even at first-time managers. Greenwich, Connecticut, the
wealthy New York suburb that became an enclave for hedge fund managers,
overflowed with multimillionaires and more than a few billionaires.
Anybody could make money with their eyes closed. Or so it seemed.

Ron Insana was one of the people who chased that dream. Insana spent more
than a decade as one of the most prominent anchormen at CNBC, the financial news
channel on cable television that has become a constant presence in just about
every Wall Street office and trading room. He was a mere journalist, to be sure,
but he regularly interviewed some of the titans in business, trying to make
sense of the daily gyrations of the market.

In March 2006, Insana left the network to try his hand at becoming one of
those titans, setting up a fund to help investors get into hedge funds, a
so-called fund of funds. Paul Kedrosky, a writer and investor, said at the time
that Insana's move "reminded him a little of Lou Dobbs going to at the
peak of the dot-com bubble."

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