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Pro Analysis

Breakingviews: Eton Park becomes latest to show hedge fund model isn’t sustainable

Eric Mindich at Delivering Alpha 2015 in New York.
David A. Grogan | CNBC
Eric Mindich at Delivering Alpha 2015 in New York.

Eric Mindich has led a charmed professional life. He began working at Goldman Sachs while earning an economics degree at Harvard, and made partner at 27 – at the time the youngest in the Wall Street firm's history. He quit in 2004 and launched a hedge fund with some $3 billion, one of the largest sums ever. Thirteen years later, though, Mindich's luck has run out.

His main fund at Eton Park posted a loss of 9 percent in 2016, and the firm's assets fell to $7 billion, half of their 2011 peak. On Thursday, Mindich told the firm's investors he was throwing in the towel and returning their money.

Eton Park is just the latest firm to conclude the hedge-fund model isn't sustainable.