Catching A Whale

The SEC apparently suspects Steve Cohen of SAC Capital of being complicit in insider trading by his portfolio managers. They’ve sent out a Wells notice.

Now Steve is a multi-billionaire and patron of the arts. So the art world is understandably concerned that this source of money may dry up.

“The market can absorb the loss of one collector,” said the London-based dealer Kenny Schachter. “It’s more a case of the vultures circling over what he’s bought. Cohen was always pruning and improving his collection. If he has to sell, his name isn’t a celebrity provenance that adds 25 percent to prices. The premium comes from knowing he always bought top quality.”

Yeah. Sure. Top quality? This is a guy who paid $8 million for a dead shark in a tank of formaldehyde. Yeah, it’s a nice tank and a decent-sized shark, but it’s just any old shark, that’s all it is. Not like it was caught by Hemingway or something. Anyone – even Steve – could have put it together for less than $50K, easily (Formaldehyde is about $15/gallon). These guys are afraid their whale is gonna be caught and they are going to be short one sucker.

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