FORTUNE -- Dan Loeb, the $11 billion hedge fund titan, says he is betting on a Japanese rebound.
Speaking on Thursday at the annual SALT hedge fund conference, Loeb named Japan as the investment he is most excited about right now.
"We are extremely focused on Japan," says Loeb, who runs the Third Point hedge fund.
In a recent investing letter, Loeb mentioned that he was betting against the yen and had bought shares of a few Japanese companies. But on Thursday, Loeb made the case for buying Japanese stocks in general.
Loeb said that he has seen a massive improvement in the Japanese economy since he started looking at it a year ago. While many people are focused on the fact that the Bank of Japan has embarked on a more aggressive version of the Federal Reserve's bond buying effort, nicknamed QE, Loeb said that's not the only reason to like Japan. He says the country's new political leadership is making changes that will make their economy more efficient and spur growth. Loeb believes that Japan's new Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will follow through on promises to make reforms that will change wages and bring more women into the workforce.
"It's the structural reform that we see that will be the big game changer," says Loeb.
Loeb said if value of the yen, which has been dropping lately, were to fall by another 10% that would provide a huge boost to Japanese corporate profits. What's more, Loeb said the Japanese market is cheap, trading at 13 times earnings, compared to about 18 for U.S. stocks.
"There's a possibility of a big rally, and it's not a bet you have to pay up for," says Loeb.
And Loeb isn't the only noted investment manager who is talking up Japan. On Wednesday at the SALT conference, Bill Novogratz of Fortress Investment Group said he liked Japanese stocks because the Bank of Japan is doing "QE times four." Also on Wednesday, hedge fund manager Stanley Druckenmiller speaking in New York at the Ira Sohn investment conference also made the case for Japanese stocks.
Japan has been a frequent topic for global hedge funds managers this year. Not everyone is bullish. Late last year, hedge fund manager Kyle Bass, who became famous for betting against the housing market, has said that he is betting against Japan. He said he thinks the Bank of Japan's stimulus efforts will fail.
Along with Japan, Loeb said he was buying up mortgages and other bonds based on consumer credits.
Hedge fund manager Lasry doesn't get ambassadorship.
FORTUNE -- Hedge fund manager Marc Lasry will not be the next U.S. Ambassador to France, following a bizarre process in which the hedge fund manager was told that he was indeed President Obama's pick.
Reuters was first to report the new development, and Fortune has obtained a short letter sent today by Lasry to investors in his firm, Avenue Capital.
From the letter:
"I am writing MOREDan Primack - Apr 23, 2013 4:13 PM ET
Hedge fund affiliates of SAC Capital will pay more than $600 million.
FORTUNE -- Regulators announced Friday that affiliates of the hedge fund SAC Capital had settled insider trading charges for more than $600 million. While the amount is stunning -- with one settlement touted by the Securities and Exchange Commission as "the largest ever in an insider trading case" -- some believe that this could actually be a positive development for MOREKatie Benner - Mar 15, 2013 5:59 PM ET
Private equity giant expands hedge fund group.
FORTUNE -- The Carlyle Group (CG) this morning announced that it has acquired a 55% economic stake in Vermillion Asset Management, a $2.2 billion commodities hedge fund manager.
Mitch Petrick, Carlyle's head of global market strategies, says that the deal is more partnership than acquisition, with Vermillion expected to maintain both its brand and its senior management. In terms of assets under management, however, all $2.2 MOREDan Primack - Oct 3, 2012 7:22 AM ET
John Arnold was once considered one of the world's top commodities traders. Now the 38-year old is leaving the business.
By Leah McGrath Goodman
FORTUNE -- Traders, when not speaking on the record, will sometimes allude to the search for a financial Truth -- a belief that somewhere buried deep within the market there is a sweet spot that, if properly tapped, can unleash a fortune.
John Arnold, the 38-year-old billionaire gas MOREMay 4, 2012 5:00 AM ET
What do Lehman Brothers, Italy's biggest bank, and a hedge fund called OWS have in common?
By Leigh Gallagher, assistant managing editor
FORTUNE -- I had my head buried in the newspaper as usual on the subway this morning, reading about Occupy Wall Street when I looked up and saw a man in front of me wearing a navy blue fleece with an "OWS" logo on it. Having just been reading the MORENov 21, 2011 12:24 PM ET
In the world of hedge funds, the administration business is booming. But investors who think that these third party reports are independent had better think again.
Hedge fund administration is part of a burgeoning cottage industry that attempts to make funds more transparent to investors. Administrators make sure that trades have occurred, and that the net asset value (NAV) of a fund's portfolio is copacetic. They also try to ascertain whether MOREKatie Benner - May 9, 2011 10:59 AM ET
Private markets -- like those that trades share of Facebook -- are elitist, discriminatory, and at the same time, entirely appropriate.
FORTUNE -- I can't buy Facebook stock, even though there are plenty of shares for sale. You probably can't either, because such deals are transacted on exclusive, private markets that shun the vast majority of Americans. It's elitist. It's discriminatory. And at the same time, it's entirely appropriate.
Private placements, in MOREDan Primack - Apr 18, 2011 5:00 AM ET
Editor's note: This week FORTUNE is publishing excerpts from its favorite business books of 2010. This excerpt from Michael Lewis's The Big Short introduces Steve Eisman, one of the only money managers to predict the root cause of the financial crisis and profit from it, even as he was near-powerless to actually stop it.
By Michael Lewis, contributor
Eisman entered finance about the time I exited it. He'd grown up in New MOREDec 24, 2010 3:00 AM ET
Greg Lippman, the former Deutsche Bank (DB) trader profiled by Michael Lewis in "The Big Short," participated this morning in the Bloomberg 2010 Hedge Fund conference, held at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City. And since Bloomberg TV was taping, it also doubled as Lippman's first-ever television interview.
Kind of fascinating how mild-mannered he comes across, compared to the brash and unfiltered portrayal by Lewis.
Lippman earlier this year left Deutsche to MOREDan Primack - Dec 2, 2010 11:58 AM ET
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