June 23, 2024

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What is Hedge Fund Week? Miami’s “Wall Street South” has a fast-money Coachella in January

2 min read

No one in New York or LA orders a Carlyle Fresco.

But that’s what they were mixing the other night by the pool at the famed Fontainebleau Miami Beach – a sure sign the hedge fund set was back in town.

The tequila and grapefruit spritz was named in honor of the Carlyle Group Inc., which was one of the sponsors of a conference in the hotel.

And, like so many things in South Florida these days, it smacked of one oh-so-sweet ingredient: money.      

At times Miami seemed as if half of American finance had flown in for what’s prosaically known as Hedge Fund Week, a sort of Coachella for the fast-money crowd. The rolling series of conferences and parties swaggers through this area each January, during the height of the Florida winter season.

“Who’s going to close a deal this week? Make some noise!” the DJ at LIV, the thumping mega nightclub in the Fontainebleau, shouted into the mic late Wednesday night. The suits in the crowd went wild.

Now more than ever, the old Wall Street of New York is sizing up what Miami promoters breathlessly refer to as Wall Street South. Even skeptics wonder whether there’s more to this than hype. The pandemic prompted wealthy financiers to flock here for the low taxes and good weather. For now, they’re staying. 

Where money goes, politicians follow. As President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump head toward a likely rematch in November, money and influence are snaking through Miami. Even the city’s annual hedge fund confab gives off a new vibe this election season. This is no longer merely a meeting of money managers. This feels like a gathering of kingmakers.

And this may not be a one-off: Florida has eclipsed California and Texas as the nation’s single largest source of donations to Republican presidential campaigns, racking up $30 million for GOP candidates in 2023.

“They’re all going to be down here raising money,” Nitin Motwani, a derivatives…

Michael Smith, Bloomberg

2024-02-03 08:17:50

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