Sunday, March 3, 2013

Revisiting Titanium Asset Management

I had almost entirely forgotten about Titanium Asset Management in outer Sydney until Friday when an anonymous person left this comment on my blog:

Hempton, you are one sad person. Look at the crap you write. Your mother must be ashamed of you.

And yes - I confess they got the first bit right. There is a little bit of sadness here.

But to explain my sadness you need to revisit my post on Titanium Asset Management and their fictional returns.

Titanium's website is not there any more (and I attribute that partly to my post and partly to the related articles in the Sydney Morning Herald).

Whatever: you can still find the website at

Here is a picture of Titanium's returns versus the ASX200.

(The original along with a long series of monthly entry and exit prices can be found at this link...)

These returns were of course fictional (the "fund manager" later said they came from "paper trading" even though the original documents described them as audited).

When the auditor confirmed to me that he never audited the returns - well that sort of clinched it.

As I said Titanium Asset Management's website has disappeared.

Briefly Titanium Asset Management renamed themselves "Wedgetail Asset Management" but that website has also disappeared. The website contact in the whois database is Andrew Blanchette*.

One of the fund managers at Titanium has wound up as the "Investment Governance and Reporting Manager" at a reputable financial institution.

And Blanchette remains the Chief Executive Officer of a large financial planning dealer group called - you guessed it - Titanium.

Nobody has been criminally charged for marketing a funds management business on false returns.

So unfortunately I am sad.

Whether my mum is proud of me - that is another question. She always had a penchant for calling a spade a shovel - and I am proud of her.


*An aside. Australians may know why Blanchette is otherwise famous. Short version: he was a boyfriend of a model - Carolyne Byrne. Carolyne Byrne was found dead at the Gap - a Sydney suicide spot. Her later boyfriend Gordon Wood was convicted of murder. Blanchette publicly accused Wood of the murder. Wood protested his innocence and accused Blanchette of the murder. Blanchette was investigated and cleared. Wood's conviction was later overturned as a miscarriage of justice. Probable truth - she committed suicide - possibly induced by SSRIs - and nobody is guilty of murder. The longer version is more colorful because it involves prominent but now dead members of the Sydney business community - alas the longer version is a probable mash of falsehoods too...


Anonymous said...

It's not because of your action- it's because mr rice is dying of cancer and will decease this year.

Well done!

John Hempton said...

He faked his results. He sold based on those results.

That is his legacy.

Nemo Incognito said...

We all have to die some time. Some of us refrain from that kind of conduct while we live - Mr Rice doesn't get a free pass.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous you are confused. Mr. Rice stole from people. John caught him, and stopped it from getting further out of hand.

CrocodileChuck said...

Is the name a play on Platinum?

Anonymous said...

Todays supreme court action: Wedgetail Asset Management Limited v Peter Rice (Peter Rice).


Anonymous said...

Well done Johnny, it was only 100 years ago they would hang you for stealing a man's horse. How many horses have these thieves managed to steal from society? You're an honorable man and a hero for bringing the truth to the forefront for all to see. blue_wild

killybegs fisherman said...

john, what are your thoughts re recent stories that good old focus media is having issues raising the debt portion of their buyout. (one assumes the blind leading blind caryle is still kicking in their "equitY" portion.

Anonymous said...

Seems Titanium Asset Management has been put into administration, anyone surprised?

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