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$34 billion Citadel is dominating 2020. Here’s a look at how it’s outperforming its rivals — and the hedge fund’s plan for its latest Goldman hire.


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$34 billion Citadel is dominating 2020. Here’s a look at how it’s outperforming its rivals — and the hedge fund’s plan for its latest Goldman hire.

Ken Griffin speaks at the 2019 Milken conference. Mike Blake/Reuters This story is available exclusively to Business Insider subscribers. Become an Insider and start reading now. Citadel’s flagship Wellington fund is up more than 16% through July, and its standalone Global Fixed Income fund is up nearly 12% over the same time frame, sources tell…

$34 billion Citadel is dominating 2020. Here’s a look at how it’s outperforming its rivals — and the hedge fund’s plan for its latest Goldman hire.

ken griffinken griffin

Ken Griffin speaks at the 2019 Milken conference.

Mike Blake/Reuters


This story is available exclusively to Business Insider subscribers.
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  • Citadel’s flagship Wellington fund is up more than 16% through July, and its standalone Global Fixed Income fund is up nearly 12% over the same time frame, sources tell Business Insider.
  • Ken Griffin’s $34 billion firm has five different strategies feeding into Wellington, and all five are positive for the year when the average hedge fund has lost money. Two strategies, sources say, have had some of their best years ever in 2020.
  • Citadel has continued to recruit top talent across different parts of its business; the firm is adding Two Sigma executive Andrew Janian to its tech team next year, and former Goldman Sachs partner David Casner started in June on the credit team.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

In a year where the markets make no sense and multi-billion-dollar funds close, Citadel is still pumping out returns.

The $34 billion firm is up more than 16% in its flagship Wellington Fund for the year through July, while its standalone Global Fixed Income fund is up nearly 12% over the same stretch, a source familiar with the firm told Business Insider. In July, Wellington was up 2.7% and Global Fixed Income returned 2.1%.  

The five strategies that feed into Wellington — equities, fixed income and macro, global credit, commodities, and quant — are all positive for the year. 

The firm’s global quantitative strategies unit has had its best start to a year in its history, while the global credit unit, which is led by former Goldman Sachs partner Pablo Salame, has had its most profitable start to a year in more than a decade, the source said. 

This is a departure from the realities for many firms in the $3 trillion hedge-fund space, where quants have struggled to rebound from a volatile March, and credit funds have battled margin calls and low-interest rates. The average hedge fund, according to Hedge Fund Research, is flat for the year.

Citadel’s outpaced most of its multi-strategy peers so far this year. Steve Cohen’s Point72 is up 7% through July, while Izzy Englander’s Millennium is up 12%, according to Bloomberg. ExodusPoint, run by Michael Gelband, has returned 8.7% this year, and start-up Cinctive Capital is up 7%. 

The leader in multi-strategy world has been Balyasny’s Atlas Enhanced fund, which is up 20.5%; the firm has continued its hot start to the year

Citadel’s credit unit is also in the process of developing a new strategy. David Casner, a former Goldman partner who was the head of U.S. equity volatility trading and global co-head of equity flow derivatives trading at the bank, started in June and is building out an equity derivatives strategy under Salame. Casner is also in charge of the firm’s convertible arbitrage strategy. 

See more: Billionaire Ken Griffin’s Citadel has a sprawling alumni network of more than 80 hedge funds. Take a look at our exclusive list.

The firm’s been recruiting across all sections of its business, poaching a pair of big names from rival funds recently. Andrew Janian, a top Two Sigma tech executive, will start at the firm next year, while Isaac Chang, formerly AQR’s head of trading, is joining in September as Griffin’s first-ever head of execution trading for fixed income.

Griffin meanwhile has named Jonas Diedrich, who started as an analyst at the Chicago-based firm more than a decade ago, to a new role as the European head of Global Equities, which is run by Justin Lubell, who Griffin recruited from rival fund Point72 last year.

Citadel declined to comment on performance.

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