Odey purchased 8.58 million shares valued at $206.9 million of San Francisco-based Wells Fargo between July and September, according to a filing today with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The hedge fund bought 3.71 million shares of Citigroup valued at $95.1 million and 2.06 million shares of JPMorgan valued at $62.2 million.
Wells Fargo, the fourth-biggest U.S. bank by assets, has slumped 19 percent this year as investors question whether lenders will be hurt by slowing economic growth and Europe’s sovereign-debt crisis. JPMorgan Chase has declined 24 percent and Citigroup has fallen 40 percent.
Odey, 52, has previously profited from buying banks after other investors sold their shares because of concerns of falling revenues. One hedge fund he manages, Odey European Inc., rose 32 percent in 2009 after he purchased shares of lenders including Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and Barclays Plc, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
The Odey European fund declined 14 percent in 2011 as of Oct. 28. Odey didn’t immediately return a phone call seeking comment after regular business hours. Odey Asset Management oversees $7 billion, according to its website.
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