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Whitney to oversee equities at Arch

NEW YORK (Bloomberg) — Running a hedge fund didn't work out for Meredith Whitney, once one of the most famous banking analysts in the US. So she's starting fresh at a Bermuda-based insurer.

Whitney has begun at Arch Capital Group Ltd, where she's overseeing an equity portfolio that had about $800 million under management at the end of September, Preston Hutchings, the company's chief investment officer, said in an interview.

Arch, which writes property-and-casualty insurance and reinsurance, has been led by chief executive officer Constantine Iordanou since 2003. The firm had more than $15 billion of investments as of the end of September.

Whitney will oversee a portfolio with money allocated to about eight managers, including JPMorgan Chase & Co and BlackRock, Hutchings said. Arch's investments include US and Asian stocks.

“Her task is to essentially manage the managers,” Hutchings said. “It's not S&P focused, it's a little more varied than that.”

Arch's portfolio beats the size of Whitney's former firm, Kenbelle Capital, which she launched in 2013 with the help of a $50 million investment from a fund tied to billionaire Michael Platt. He dropped a suit this year that sought the return of its stake, according to a court filing in June.

“I think that chapter of my life is over,” Whitney said about the hedge fund in a Fox Business interview that month. “This whole experience has been highly unfortunate and I'm putting it behind me.”

Whitney was a banking analyst when she shot to fame for warning in 2007 that Citigroup would have to cut its dividend, before most saw the financial crisis coming. After she told 60 Minutes in 2010 that hundreds of billions of dollars of municipal defaults were coming, municipal bonds thrived instead. Kenbelle's American Revival Fund sputtered when she made bets on companies based in the US heartland.

Whitney didn't immediately respond to e-mail and phone messages.

New Arch recruit: Meredith Whitney

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Published December 09, 2015 at 8:00 am (Updated December 08, 2015 at 11:35 pm)

Whitney to oversee equities at Arch

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