| NEW YORK, July 17
NEW YORK, July 17 Hedge fund billionaire John
Paulson wants the world to know he is having a good year.
After two years of losses in his once enormous Advantage
Funds, Paulson has something to brag about in 2013 with his
Recovery fund up 25.22 percent and his Paulson Enhanced fund up
15.63 percent. The Paulson Credit Opportunities fund is up 11.2
percent, even after some losses in June.
"We are having a very strong year," Paulson told an audience
of investors and hedge fund managers at the CNBC Institutional
Investor Delivering Alpha Conference on Wednesday.
He also said his $19 billion firm appears to be back in the
groove of a long-term record that made it popular with pension
funds and private investors alike.
Paulson shot to fame in 2007 with a prescient bet against
subprime mortgages and repeated his success in 2009 with a bet
This year, however, his gold bet has been wrong-footed with
a loss of 65 percent in the first half of the year for the $300
million portfolio, which is the smallest of his lineup and which
is now largely his own money.
Despite the poor performance, Paulson is convinced gold will
rebound, especially because he expects inflation to pick up. "If
you are looking for a hedge for potential inflation for the
future and have a longer term view, then gold is still a good
bet," he said.
As for investments that are already paying off, Paulson
reiterated his big bet on U.S real estate, urging private
investors to do the same by buying a house or consider buying a
second house. "We are in the first year of a five- to seven-year
opportunity," Paulson said.
Paulson launched a first real estate vehicle, the Real
Estate Recovery fund, in 2009, buying up tracts of
yet-to-be-developed residential and commercial land around the
United States. His firm is currently raising a second real
In the CNBC interview, Paulson was not asked to comment on
the securities fraud trial of Fabrice Tourre, a former Goldman
trader, who sold many of the subprime securities to investors
that Paulson was betting against.
The 57-year-old Paulson also sounded a bullish note on
potential deals in the cable and wireless sectors.
"We are in a healthy M&A environment that is going to get
better," he said.
He shrugged off any suggestion that it was time to get out
of the business. "It is realistic that I will do this for
another 20 years," he said, saying he admires octogenarian
investing star Warren Buffett and plans to emulate his