Steven A. Cohen
Steven A. Cohen is a hedge fund manager and the founder of Point72 Asset Management and its predecessor, SAC Capital, which was under federal investigation for nearly a decade before being shut down in 2014 after six employees pleaded guilty to insider trading charges. While Cohen himself was not charged with insider trading, the SEC has filed a suit charging him with "failure to supervise," and he is also the target of a class action suit "brought on behalf of hundreds of Elan and Wyeth shareholders who lost money when Cohen shorted the stocks," according to The New Yorker. SAC Capital paid $1.8 billion in fines to the federal government to cover the penalties resulting from the investigation and Cohen's Point72 Asset Management is "forbidden from managing money for outside investors under SAC’s plea deal with prosecutors."
Cohen and his wife, Alexandra Cohen, are major donors to Republican candidates and causes. In 2014 Cohen was revealed to have made a previously unknown $1,000,000 contribution during the 2011-2012 Wisconsin recall elections to Wisconsin Club for Growth, which is a target ot a long-running investigation into potentially illegal campaign coordination with Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's electoral campaign.
Cohen was called "one of the most successful hedge fund managers ever" by Forbes, who estimated his net worth in May 2015 at $11.4 billion.
Reported and Unreported Political Contributions
Ties to Scott Walker and Dark Money Groups Under Investigation
Cohen made an undisclosed contribution of $1,000,000 in March 2012 to Wisconsin Club for Growth (WiCFG), a Wisconsin-based organization that spent at least $9.1 million during the recall elections, and funneled at least $10 million more to other politically-active groups like Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce, while reporting that it spent $0 on politics to the IRS. The contribution only became public in August 2014, when documents related to a "John Doe" investigation into potentially illegal campaign coordination between Walker's campaign, WiCFG, WMC, and possibly other groups were briefly unsealed. According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, the documents suggest that Walker was advised to personally solicit funds from Cohen and others for WiCFG:
- "The records include example after example of Walker or his aides encouraging donors to give money to the Wisconsin Club for Growth.
- "In September 2011, Doner sent an email to Walker and others with brainstorming ideas for raising money for the Wisconsin Club for Growth. Among them: "Take Koch's money," "Get on a plane to Vegas and sit down with Sheldon Adelson," and "Go heavy after (corporations) to give."
- "Stephen Cohen, the founder of SAC Capitol Advisors, gave the Wisconsin Club for Growth $1 million less than a month after Walker was scheduled meet with somone else from the company." (emphasis added).
Case documents filed by the prosecutors include the following supporting exhibits related to Cohen:
- "[Id. at ¶¶ 52, 56; Exhibits 44, 47] A March 10, 2012, itinerary that indicates Scott Walker met with Michael Sullivan of SAC Capital Advisers. On April 13, 2012, the WiCFG bank account reflects a $1,000,000 deposit from the account of Stephen Cohen, the founder and manager of SAC Capitol Advisors."
(Cohen's name appears to have been misspelled in these documents.)
For more information, see the pages Scott Walker, Wisconsin Club for Growth, Scott Walker John Doe Documents, and The Campaign to Legalize Coordination in Wisconsin and Nationwide.
Disclosed Federal Contributions
- $61,600: National Republican Senatorial Committee
- $5,000: John B. Larson (D-CT)
- $5,000: Justin Bernier (R)
- $60,800: National Republican Senatorial Committee
- $20,000: Every Republican is Crucial PAC (R)
- $10,000: TACPAC (R)
- $10,000: Continuing a Majority Party Action Committee (R)
- $9,600: John Ensign (R-NV)
- $9,600: Pat Toomey (R-PA)
- $9,600: Kelly Ayotte (R)
- $5,000: Prosperity PAC (R)
- $5,000: Daniel Webster PAC (R)
- $4,800: Randy Altschuler (R)
- $4,800: Mary Bono Mack (R-CA)
- $4,800: Rob Portman (R-OH)
- $4,800: Trey Grayson (R)
- $4,800: Ron Wyden (D-OR)
- $4,800: Orrrin G. Hatch (R-UT)
- $4,800: Eric Cantor (R-VA)
- $2,400: John Thune (R-SD)
- $2,400: Mark Kirk (R-IL)
- $2,400: Roy Blunt (R-MO)
As of May 2015:
- Founder and hedge fund manager, Point72 Asset Management
- Founder, Steven and Alexandra Cohen Foundation
- Minority owner, New York Mets
- Founder and former hedge fund manager, SAC Capital
- Former member of the Board of Trustees, Brown University
- Former board member, Robin Hood
Point72 Asset Management, L.P.
72 Cummings Point Road
Stamford, Connecticut 06902
Telephone: (203) 203-890-2000
- Forbes, Steve Cohen Profile, Forbes, 2015.
- Patrick Radden Keefe, "The Empire of Edge: How a doctor, a trader, and the billionaire Steven A. Cohen got entangled in a vast financial scandal," New Yorker, October 13, 2014.
- Sheelah Kolhatkar, "Why SAC Capital's Steven Cohen Isn't in Jail," Bloomberg Business, January 2, 2014.
- Matthew Goldstein, SAC Capital, Meet Point72 Asset Management, New York Times, April 7, 2014.
- U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, "SEC Charges Steven A. Cohen With Failing to Supervise Portfolio Managers and Prevent Insider Trading ," press release, July 19, 2013.
- Patrick Marley, Daniel Bice, and Lee Bergquist, "Walker wanted funds funneled to Wisconsin Club for Growth," Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, August 22, 2014.
- Brendan Fischer, GOP Prosecutor Defends Scott Walker Criminal Probe, Says "Let's Get the Truth Out", PR Watch, May 1, 2015.
- Center for Responsive Politics, "Steven Cohen Contributions (2012 cycle)," Open Secrets database, accessed May 2015.
- Center for Responsive Politics, "Alexandra Cohen Contributions (2012 cycle)," Open Secrets database, accessed May 2015.
- Center for Responsive Politics, "Bruce Kovner contributions (2010 election cycle)," Open Secrets database, accessed May 2015.
- Center for Responsive Politics, "Alexandra Cohen contributions (2010 election cycle)," Open Secrets database, accessed May 2015
- Steven and Alexandra Cohen Foundation, Founders, Steven and Alexandra Cohen Foundation, 2015.
- Brown University, New Brown fellows, trustees and officers announced, Brown University, May 28, 2008.
- Robin Hood, Robin Hood Board of Directors, Robin Hood, 2015.