Good performance, bad performance—it’s all a day (year) in the life of a star money manager, something Bruce Berkowitz knows firsthand.
By now you’ve heard the story; referred to as the “megamind of Miami” by Fortune, Berkowitz (left) founded the Fairholme Fund 13 years ago and experienced stratospheric returns for most of the time since. The fund’s performance earned Berkowitz the title not just of 2009 U.S. stock-fund manager of the year from Morningstar, but also domestic stock fund manager of the decade (along with such unknowns as Bill Gross and David Herro).
But the beginning of this decade wasn’t nearly as kind to Berkowitz, who saw returns evaporate in 2011 due mainly to bad real estate investments and a big bet on banks.
“The fund lost 28% this year through yesterday, compared with a drop of 10% for the S&P 500, including reinvested dividends,” Bloomberg reported on August 9 of last year.