Goldman cuts 20 from quantitative investment team

NEW YORK, March 13 Thu Mar 13, 2008 11:39am EDT

NEW YORK, March 13 (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N), where several of its quantitative funds plunged last year, says it has cut 20 out of 125 members of its quantitative investment team in New York.

Among those pushed out were Vice Presidents Constantin Filitti, Bernd Hanke and Christopher Li in research; Max Belenitsky and Patrick McDonough, who helped implement trading strategies; trader Eric Tsang; and Michelle Bahk, portfolio coordination. Managing director Takahiro Komatsu will be moved elsewhere within Goldman.

A Goldman spokeswoman confirmed the departures but declined further comment.

Recently Goldman folded its long-only quant equity team, led by Bob Jones, into a hedge fund team led by Mark Carhart, manager of the bank's multi-strategy Global Alpha fund.

Global Alpha's fell 40 percent last year, while the several computer-driven stock funds plummeted last summer amid unprecedented market turbulence. Goldman at one point orchestrated a $3 billion cash infusion to bolster Global Equity Opportunities.

High turnover, and poor performance last year, has driven some customers away. Last month led the Massachusetts state pension fund to end a $1.2 billion contract with Goldman. (Reporting by Joseph A. Giannone, editing by Dave Zimmerman)

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