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Moore Capital Traders Stein, Nicoll Said to Plan Own Hedge Fund

Moore Capital Management LLC traders Jens-Peter Stein and Christopher Nicoll plan to start their own hedge fund, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.

Moore may invest in the firm, said the person, who declined to be identified because the company is private. Nicoll, a former co-head of foreign exchange and emerging markets trading in Europe at Morgan Stanley, registered a firm called Stone Milliner Asset Management, according to a July 7 filing with the U.K.’s Companies House. Stein was also a managing director at the investment bank before joining Moore in 2006, according to his registration with the U.K.’s Financial Services Authority.

Hedge-fund startups had the most active first six months of the year since before the financial crisis, helped by investors seeking higher returns as central banks hold interest rates near record lows. Money managers founded 578 new hedge funds during the first six months of 2011, the most since the first half of 2007, according to Chicago-based Hedge Fund Research Inc.

Moore Capital, started by Louis Bacon, has a history of spinning off hedge funds. Paul Findley, who led the firm’s European equities team, left Moore Capital to start London-based Bramshott Capital LLP this year. In 2008, Moore Capital’s Tim Leslie started London-based James Caird Asset Management LP. Moore, which is based in New York, oversees about $15 billion.

A spokesman for Moore couldn’t comment immediately. Stein didn’t answer a telephone call to his office seeking comment. Nicoll didn’t return a call and two e-mails seeking comment. Their plans to start Stone Milliner Asset Management were reported earlier today by HFMWeek.

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