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Meet John Paulson, Today's Warren Buffett

By Forrest Jones   |   Monday, 31 Aug 2009 04:43 PM

Who is today's top stock picker, the closest thing to the next Warren Buffett?

Some would say John Paulson, the 78th richest person in the world according to Forbes Magazine and the hedge fund manager who called the housing meltdown way before it happened and made money off of it.

Now it seems everyone is watching him.

“This is someone the mutual funds are watching. This is someone who the hedge funds are watching," Steve Grasso of the Stuart Frankel investment firm told CNBC.

"This is the Warren Buffett for the next generation."

Some of John Paulson’s reported deals of late including:

  • Snapping up Citigroup shares recently, betting that the financial icon is undervalued, according to Reuters, reportedly buying a 2 percent stake.

  • Other investments in financial-sector stocks include 168 million shares of Bank of America, 2 million shares of Goldman Sachs and 2 million Shares of UltraShort Financials ProShares.

  • Gold also figure big in Paulson's $29 billion fund. Paulson invested in Johannesburg-based Gold Fields earlier this year as well as bought a $1.28 billion stake in AngloGold, also based in Johannesburg, in March, Bloomberg reported.

  • Paulson also has been bullish on mortgage securities, distressed debt, and leveraged loans, The Wall Street Journal reported.

    "We completely shifted our focus on the credit markets from one which had a short bias starting in 2006 to one that is aggressively long," he told The Wall Street Journal recently.

    During the last four months, Paulson purchased top-rated residential mortgage-backed bonds, commercial mortgage-backed securities, distressed debt, and leveraged loans.

    He also bought bank shares.

    "While we don't believe bank stocks in general are undervalued, we do believe many represent compelling investment opportunities over the cycle," Paulson said.

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    Who is today's top stock picker, the closest thing to the next Warren Buffett?Some would say John Paulson, the 78th richest person in the world according to Forbes Magazine and the hedge fund manager who called the housing meltdown way before it happened and made money off...
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