U.S. Markets

Exclusive: Passport executive Garry to depart $4.4 billion hedge fund firm

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Tim Garry, second-in-command at $4.4 billion hedge fund firm Passport Capital, has decided to leave, according to a letter sent to clients on Thursday morning seen by Reuters.

“Given his achievements at Passport, Tim is ready for a role with an increased level of responsibility and will be pursuing new opportunities,” firm founder John Burbank wrote in the letter. “We look forward to supporting Tim in his future endeavors and appreciate his many valuable contributions to Passport.”

Garry was co-chairman of the risk committee at Passport, which he joined in 2007 from State Street Global Advisors. He helped Burbank establish increased risk controls and quantitative analysis for San Francisco-based Passport. The firm was then known for volatile returns: its main fund gained 220 percent in 2007 by betting against real estate but then fell 50 percent during the financial crisis in 2008.

Garry, who did not respond to a request for comment, was also co-manager of Passport’s stock-focused strategy with Burbank. That strategy gained about 10 percent in 2015, a rebound from a 6 percent loss in 2014, according to performance information seen by Reuters. Passport’s main global strategy gained 8.4 percent in 2015, its fourth consecutive positive year. The HedgeFund Intelligence Global Equity Index, which tracks stock-focused funds, gained just 2.6 percent in 2015 through November.

Burbank also noted two promotions in the letter: Peter Supino is now portfolio manager and director of research and Sid Mitra is portfolio manager for investments in resources.

Burbank has said recently that he is pessimistic on the global economy, in part because of slower growth in China.

Reporting by Lawrence Delevingne; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Meredith Mazzilli