Former head of Arbalet commodities fund joins Millennium

NEW YORK Wed Feb 5, 2014 4:34pm EST

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Jennifer Fan, a hedge fund manager specializing in finding relative value in energy and agriculture markets, has joined Millennium Management to continue that strategy after closing her own commodities fund last year, sources said on Wednesday.

The 30-year-old Fan, one of the few women hedge fund managers, started work this month at New York-based Millennium, her Linkedin page said, after shuttering the fund she ran, Arbalet Capital, in late 2013.

She declined comment when contacted by email.

Millennium is a global investment management firm, with about $20 billion under management, the company website said. It has more than 1,300 employees, with offices in London, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Singapore, among other locations.

The firm's founder Israel Englander was ranked 150 among U.S. billionaires by Forbes in September, with a personal net worth of $3 billion.

A source familiar with Fan's new job said she had been hired by Millennium as a portfolio manager responsible for commodities, with a bias toward relative value.

The relative-value strategy attempts to exploit differentials in price, delivery dates and locations of the products it trades in. Fan had used the strategy at Arbalet focusing on the energy and agricultural markets.

It was not known if there were other commodities-focused portfolio managers at Millennium. Sources familiar with the firm said it has in the past hired managers who practiced global macro strategies, which sometimes involved commodities.

Millennium did not return a call seeking comment.

Fan began Arbalet, named after a type of crossbow, from the remains of a relative-value commodities portfolio at Arrowhawk Capital Partners that she had run.

Arbalet raised about $700 million in funds in 2012, making it one of the biggest commodity fund launches that year.

But by September last year, assets under management at the New York-based firm had trickled to below $200 million after disappointing returns led to investor redemptions.

Commodity hedge funds mostly performed badly in 2013.

London-based Clive Capital, an oil and metals fund run by Chris Levett which once managed around $5 billion, also closed in September with less than $700 million after a long struggle with weak returns. In December, veteran commodity traders Neal Shear and Jean Bourlot decided to shut their Higgs Capital fund in New York after facing headwinds in raising money.

Many other funds, particularly those in natural gas, had double-digits losses for the year.

(Reporting By Barani Krishnan; Editing by Josephine Mason and Alden Bentley)

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