Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Bill Ackman: So hot right now

Yesterday after the market closed, CVS bought Longs Drug (LDG), for $71 a share, over a 30% premium to their closing price of $54. It wasn't a shocking merger, given CVS's history of growing their store base through acquisition, but some people were surprised at the magnitude of the premium.

Why am I mentioning this? Because per James Altucher (sub. site with no permalinks), Bill Ackman, famous/notorious for his short positions in certain financial firms (Fannie Mae, MBIA, etc.), owns 8.8% of Longs, and "also bought 'total return swaps' to bring its 'economic' exposure to about 15.4% of Longs."

And he just did it last week! The timing was so good, he's probably not happy about it, because surely if the guy bent on the ruin of the U.S. financial services sector nailed a big takeout so perfectly, he must have been tipped off.

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