In the pilot episode of the Showtime drama Billions, a television host grills Bobby Axelrod (Damien Lewis), founder of the hedge fund Axe Capital, at a public forum. “How do you respond to the criticism that hedge funds are the scavengers of the financial sector, and that a select few have undue influence on the markets?”
“We’re not scavengers,” Axelrod replies. “We’re white blood cells scrubbing out bad companies, earning for our investors, preventing bubbles. A hedge fund like mine is a market regulator.”
This bold statement debate: Do hedge funds represent an asset to the larger economy, or a menace? Do they really help make markets more efficient and transparent, or do they just exploit opportunities at the expense of other investors?
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