It’s been a tough summer for the hedge funds — returns are down, the skills of rock stars like John Paulson are being questioned, and no one knows where the next face-melting payday is coming from. (In other words: “Life is such a fucking disaster.”) It’s time to acknowledge one thing hedge funds still have going for them: the comely young women in their investor-relations departments.
Hedge funds are primarily and necessarily staffed by nerds. For every Nicholas Gentileschi or Josh Birnbaum, there are twenty sallow-skinned, mouth-breathing math geeks. People skills don’t come naturally to this set, which is why since the dawn of the modern hedge fund, firms have outsourced the social aspects of their business — the marketing of their funds to potential investors, and the managing of existing investors — to bright, socially competent, and above all, aesthetically pleasing young women, under the umbrella of Investor Relations, Marketing, or Business Development. Over the years, the IR Hottie has become as common a sight on a trading floor as a Bloomberg terminal or a copy of Atlas Shrugged. They’re like cheerleaders for the math team. In appreciation of all the hard work they must be doing this season, Daily Intel teamed up with Dealbreaker’s Bess Levin and polled managers, investors, and industry watchers to find out which of these money honeys are doing the best job of staying hot under pressure. Here are the leaders in the field.