THE 4 BILLION DOLLAR SWALLAR* -
BSC, CA – Tis said the stock market is a humbling place, where even astute investors make many mistakes. William A. Ackman, a billionaire before he hit 50 and a master investor is a prime example of an Inside Job who is in the California spotlight now because of an insider trading suit happening here. The type of behavior is indicative of those like Sean Parker, another billionaire prevented from his inside job by a different billionaire. Crazy times and seemingly no country for a deviant man.
Today, things are very different for William A. Ackman. His company’s performance is way down, he is in the midst of an expensive divorce, and on March 13, he and the investors in funds run by Pershing Square Capital Management swallowed a $4 billion loss on Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, a beleaguered drug company. Big Pharma shot a wad. Gulp.
A little over two years ago, William A. Ackman, was one of Wall Street’s brashest and most self-assured hedge fund managers, and Valeant was a big Pershing Square holding. But several months after May 2015 Mr. Ackman and his investors began riding Valeant’s shares all the way from $262 to $11, driven both by rival investors who had bet against Valeant’s shares and former fans who dumped the stock as bad news emerged.