We’ve got a lot to update on this Amaranth thing. I know you’re on the edge of your seats.

A few points:

  • The county pension fund officials are considering legal action against Amaranth. They apparently think they may have been victims of fraud. Amaranth had promised that it had certain protections in place.

They went into closed session and refused to discuss many of the specifics about the Amaranth “debacle.”

“If you initiate litigation proceedings, it’s not advantageous to disclose prematurely your analysis of an event,” said the retirement system’s lawyer Regina Petty.

  • CNBC was reporting this morning that Amaranth may have actually lost 65 percent of its assets in the month of September. News reports had come to somewhat of a consensus that Amaranth lost 50 percent of its assets. As a hedge fund it is unregulated and not required to be too open about what’s going on. County officials said Amaranth has scheduled a couple of conference calls with investors, only to later postpone them.

According to reports, Amaranth was able to sell some of its “positions” so it will have some money to hand over to angry investors like the county’s pension fund.

We’ll have to ask Rich Toscano to explain what that means. If you haven’t read it yet, his explainer on what hedge funds are should be required reading for everyone.

  • This lack of certainty about the losses the county suffered in Amaranth’s demise was reflected by the pension fund’s CEO Brian White. White had earlier estimated that the county’s pension system lost $45 million. He said it could be more or less than that.

There is a lot more to report and comment about. Give me a minute to catch up.


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