Paul Tudor Jones found himself in a hotbed of controversy this week when video of him opining on the dearth of women in the trading community was made public.
||Jones with his wife, Sonia, and his daughter, Caroline |
"You will never see as many great women investors and traders as men. Period. End of story," said Jones, founder of $11.3 billion hedge fund stalwart Tudor Investment Corp, in remarks last month at the University of Virginia reported by The Washington Post.
That alone might not have been enough to be newsworthy. But then, in response to the same question about why the panel was comprised only of white, middle aged men, he continued with a story about two former colleagues who by his recollection became less effective traders after having children in their twenties.
"As soon as that baby's lips touched that girl's bosom, forget it," he said.
"Every single investment idea--every desire to understand what's gonna make this go up or go down--is going to be undermined by the most beautiful experience which men will never share," he continued. "With that emotive connection between that mother and that baby…I've just seen it happen over and over again."
He added that women who choose to get married but do not have children retain a shot at being as successful as their male counterparts.
Jones also gave his opinion on traders who may be going through marital struggles. Speaking as an investor in others, he said he has an immediate and strong reaction when he hears that one of his managers may be ending his marriage (notably, Jones used male pronouns in this part of his remarks).
"One of my number one rules as an investor is…If I find out my manager is going through divorce, redeem immediately, because the emotional distraction that comes from divorce is so overwhelming. The idea that you could think straight for 60 seconds and be able to make a rational decision is impossible, particularly when there are kids involved. You can just automatically subtract 10-20% from any manager if he is going through divorce."
The talk, delivered last month in a panel discussion in front of an audience of business school students at UVA, was reportedly intended to be off-the-record. But as the university is a public institution, it was forced to give up a copy of the video to The Washington Post after the newspaper filed a Freedom of Information Act request.
On stage during Jones' comments were Julian Robertson, founder of Tiger Management, and John Griffin, founder of $7 billion Blue Ridge Capital Management. Both stayed mostly silent throughout Tudor's gender discussion, save for openly guffawing when he used the word "bosom." After Tudor had finished, and after moderator Jeffrey Walker gently disagreed with the thesis, Griffin jumped to his fellow hedge fund manager's defense.
"Paul gave an honest answer to an honest question: Why are there few women traders? There always have been, there likely always will be. I agree with him on that," Griffin said. "It’s a very specific element of the business."
As media outlets picked up on Jones' remarks, Patrick Clifford, an external spokesman for Tudor at The Abernathy MacGregor Group, responded with a link to a statement that read in part, "As I’ve told my three daughters, all of whom I’ve at one time encouraged to go into macro trading, any man or woman can do anything to which they set their heart and mind."
Steve Bruce, a spokesman for Griffin at PR shop ASC Advisors, said Blue Ridge had no further comment.
See the full text of Tudor's comments here via Business Insider