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24 Jun 2009

WBC Expands, Hires Hedge Fund Specialist

Stephen Markowitz, most recently the Senior Vice President, Equity Derivative Sales for global inter-dealer broker Tullett Prebon, has joined hedge fund provider, WallachBeth Capital LLC (WBC) as a Managing Director of the firm.

“Having known and worked with Stephen for the better part of twenty-five years, and as the options markets have evolved, his decision to now play a senior role within our firm is a real coup." Michael Wallach, WBC’s co-founder and CEO, said, "His breadth of product knowledge, broking talents, and his deep, trusted relationships with institutional portfolio managers and hedge funds that are active in the option and ETF space will prove to be a great complement to the audience that we serve, and the services that we provide.”

WBC specializes in exchange-listed options and ETF’s, operating on a fully-disclosed, agency-only basis while serving the needs of institutional managers, premiere hedge funds, sell-side trading desks, and sophisticated professionals trading in the wide-spectrum of exchange-listed equity options, listed and OTC equities, ETF’s, and non-US equities. Member FINRA, SIPC, CBSX, ISE, ARCA, and New York Amex options.

Cayman Islands and Ireland Sign Tax Information Exchange Agreement

The Cayman Islands Government signed a Tax Information Exchange Agreement (TIEA) with Ireland at a ceremony held at the British Embassy in Berlin.

Signing the agreement on behalf of the Cayman Islands was the Leader of Government
Business/Premier Designate and Minister for Financial Services, the Hon. McKeeva Bush, OBE, JP.

“The Cayman Islands is pleased to sign this agreement today with Ireland, marking another important step towards our ongoing commitment to international cooperation and OECD standards for transparency and exchange of information on tax matters. This signing will commemorate the beginning of what I am sure will be a highly productive and mutually rewarding relationship between the Cayman Islands and Ireland,” Bush said.

He added, “Our newly formed ‘Negotiation Team’ has worked tirelessly to secure technical agreements quickly. Our signing last week of a Double Taxation Agreement with the UK together with today’s signing is a direct result of their commitment and hard work. We look forward to continuing these efforts and I am confident that we will be on the OECD’s white list very soon.”

The Cayman Islands delegation, which was led by Mr. Bush also included the Minister of District Administration, Works, and Gender Affairs the Hon. Julianna O’ Connor-Conolly, JP; Chief Secretary the Hon. George McCarthy, OBE, JP; Financial Secretary the Hon. Kenneth Jefferson, JP; Chief Officer for Ministry of Financial Services Carson Ebanks, OBE, JP; Senior Assistant Secretary Michelle Bahadur; Senior Political Assistant Richard Parchment; Cayman Islands Monetary Authority General Counsel/Deputy Managing Director Langston Sibblies and Paul Byles.

Signing on behalf of the Irish Government, Martin Mansergh, TD, Minister of State at the Irish Department of Finance said, “We are very pleased to be here to sign this TIEA with the Cayman Islands. This is concrete evidence of the significant progress that has been made in recent months. Ireland welcomes the commitment of the Cayman Islands to implement the OECD standards of transparency and exchange of information in tax matters and their willingness to enter into tax information exchange agreements. The signing of this agreement represents a new chapter in relations between Ireland and the Cayman Islands.”

The Cayman Islands now maintains ten bilateral tax information agreements with the following countries: United States, United Kingdom, Denmark, Faroe Islands, Finland, Greenland, Iceland, Ireland, Norway and Sweden.

Bull Path Converts Hedge Fund Into Long Short Mutal Fund

Bull Path Capital Management recently announced the conversion of one of its long-short hedge funds into a long-short equity mutual fund the 'Bull Path Long Short Fund' (BPFCX).

The newly launched mutual fund ranks #1 of 811 funds on total annualized returns in the Lipper Mid-Cap Universe for the 5 years ending March 31, 2009, may be a “perfect consideration as a core investment for many investors.” He believes the long-short category will increasingly capture investors’ attention because of its typically lower risk levels than long-only funds. BPFCX has also received a top Lipper Leader rating of 5 for capital preservation against all equity mutual funds (9,360 funds).

“Investors have been traumatized by the events of the past 18 months, including the sobering performance of many long-only, ‘buy and hold’ strategies, and wondering how and when they can reenter the market,” said Rob Kaimowitz, portfolio manager of the Fund and founder of Bull Path Capital Management. “We believe investors will be attracted to the performance characteristics of long-short funds which aim to capture the market’s upside while mitigating risk in a market sell-off.”

“Until recently, there have been few mutual funds focused on long-short, and we are one of the few tested strategies in the market today,” noted Kaimowitz. “We believe this strategy makes sense for both individual and institutional investors with a medium- to long-term view of the market.”

In addition, Kaimowitz says investors who may have previously considered long-short hedge funds should consider investing in this strategy through a mutual fund structure owing to such benefits as lower minimum investments, lower fees, full transparency and the assets being held in a trust bank.

“There has been increasing pressure on hedge funds to provide lower fees, greater liquidity and increased portfolio transparency,” noted Kaimowitz. “A mutual fund structure addresses these issues quite well.”

The Bull Path Long Short Fund adopts a strategy developed and run by Bull Path Capital Management since 2002. “One of the hallmarks of our strategy is our ability to reinvest our knowledge through our rigorous, concentrated fundamental analysis in establishing both long and short positions,” said Kaimowitz. “This ability serves us well as we seek to provide investors with consistent returns and high levels of alpha.”

The Bull Path Long Short Fund is available in A and C Class shares with a $1,000 minimum investment or a $500 minimum with participation in the automatic investment plan. The I share requires a minimum of $100,000 or a $50,000 minimum with participation in the automatic investment plan.