James Simons of New York-based Renaissance Technologies Corp earned an estimated USD 1.5 billion in 2005, making him the top earner in the latest ranking by Alpha Magazine of the world's highest-paid hedge fund managers.
A year ago Edward Lampert of ESL Investments made headlines when he cracked the USD 1 billion mark; this year two managers break the billion-dollar barrier - Renaissance's Simons and BP Capital Management's T Boone Pickens, who takes second place. Legendary hedge fund manager George Soros moves up three spots to No3, SAC Capital Advisors‚ Steven Cohen stays put at No4, and Paul Tudor Jones II of Tudor Investment Corp moves up two spots to No5.
This year's ranking of the top 25 money earners actually includes 26 managers, thanks to a tie for 25th place. The 26 managers on the list hauled in, on average, USD 363 million in earnings in 2005, up 45 per cent from the USD 251 million they made in 2004.
The top ten earners in the hedge fund industry for 2005 were: