Monday, January 30, 2012

Universa Investments L.P

Every genuine test of a theory is an attempt to falsify it, or to refute it.

Testability is falsifiability; but there are degrees of testability: some theories are more testable, more exposed to refutation, than others; they take, as it were, greater risks.

This is what describes the investment appraoch of Universa which is a Popperian hedge fund. It was started by Mark Spitznagel who worked alongside Nassim Taleb in his hedge fund Empirica Capital. Nassim serves as a scientific advisor at Universa. The investment philosophy in basic form is same as other Nassim's strategies of tail protection. Universa invests in options with the aim of providing assymetric positive returns in black-swan events. However, the strategies employed at Universa bleed out small amounts of money every day. This type of investing was pioneered by Nassim Taleb. This is increasingly being copied by various firms. Deutsche Bank has ELVIS. Nevertheless, Universa has proved to be a boon to Sovereign Wealth funds which intend to hedge their tail risks.

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