When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson

13 January 2009

Explaining the VW short squeeze

Porsche’s ownership disclosure sent the hedge funds on such a flurry of purchases for any Volkswagen stock still in circulation that the VW share price jumped from below €200 to over €1000 at one point on October 28th, making Volkswagen for a brief time the world’s most valuable company by market cap.

On paper, Porsche made between €30-40 billion in the affair. Once all is said and done, the actual profit is closer to some €6-12 billion. To put those numbers in perspective, Porsche’s revenue for the whole year of 2006 was a bit over €7 billion.

Porsche’s move took three years of careful maneuvering. It was darkly brilliant, a wealth transfer ingeniously conceived like few we’ve ever seen. Betting the right way, Porsche roiled the financial markets and took the hedge funds for a fortune.

Betting the wrong way, Adolf Merckle took his life.

ivan krstić · code culture: How Porsche hacked the financial system and made a killing

Via Kottke

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