Steven A. Cohen (Born June 11, 1956) is an American investor, hedge fund manager, and philanthropist. He is the founder of Point72 Asset Management and S.A.C. Capital Advisors both based in Stamford, Connecticut.
He has an estimated net worth of US$13 billion as of February 2017 and is ranked by Forbes as the 72nd richest man in the world, 3rd highest earning hedge fund manager, and the 30th richest person in the United States.
After Wharton, Cohen got a Wall Street job as a junior trader in the options arbitrage department at Gruntal & Co. in 1978, where he eventually managed a $75 million portfolio and six traders.
His first day on the job at Gruntal & Co., he made an $8,000 profit. He would eventually go on to make the company around $100,000 a day. Cohen was running his own trading group at Gruntal by 1984, and continued running it until he started his own company, SAC.
In 1992, Cohen started S.A.C. Capital Advisors with $20 million of his own money. As of 2009, the firm managed $14 billion in equity. Originally known as a rapid-fire trader who never held trading positions for extended periods of time, Cohen now holds an increasing number of equities for longer periods of time.
On November 20, 2012, Cohen was implicated in an alleged insider trading scandal involving an ex-SAC manager, Mathew Martoma. The SEC brought charges against a number of other SAC employees from 2010 to 2013, with various outcomes. Martoma was convicted in 2014, in what federal prosecutors billed as the most profitable insider-trading conspiracy in history. Martoma sought to have his conviction overturned in 2015; he was the eighth present or former SAC Capital employee found guilty on insider-trading charges.
Cohen was not directly named in the 2012 indictment, but was referred to as "Portfolio Manager A" "according to people familiar with the matter". The SEC later brought a civil lawsuit against Cohen, alleging his failure to supervise Martoma and Michael Steinberg. Steinberg was a senior employee and confidant of Cohen's. The case against Steinberg was dropped in October 2015, weakening the SEC's case against Cohen. Cohen's civil case was settled in January 2016; the agreement prohibits Cohen from managing outside money until 2018.
The hedge fund itself pleaded guilty to similar criminal charges in a $1.8 billion November settlement that required it to stop handling investments for outsiders. Cohen himself "escaped criminal indictment himself despite being the living, breathing heart of SAC Capital," but Dr. Sidney Gilman, the star prosecution witness against Martoma, testified that FBI agents told him Cohen was the investigation's ultimate target. He was featured in a January 2017 New Yorker article, titled "When The Feds Went After The Hedge-Fund Legend Steven A. Cohen".
Cohen is reportedly building a private museum for some of his artwork on his Greenwich property. He owns or has owned artworks by Lucio Fontana, Alberto Giacometti, Willem de Kooning, Jeff Koons, Edvard Munch, Pablo Picasso, and Andy Warhol.
In 2008, he was inducted into Institutional Investors Alpha's Hedge Fund Manager Hall of Fame along with David Swensen, Louis Bacon, Seth Klarman, Kenneth Griffin, Paul Tudor Jones, George Soros, Michael Steinhardt, Jack Nash, James Simons, Alfred Jones, Leon Levy, Julian Roberston, and Bruce Kovner.