Tuesday, June 4, 2013

That Ackman magic

About a year and a half ago Bill Ackman and his Pershing Square hedge fund gobbled up 24 million CP Rail shares at a total cost of about a billion dollars.

Today Ackman announced that Pershing will sell off 7 million of those shares for anticipated proceeds of about a billion dollars.

That means Ackman and his investors will have all their money out of CP Rail but will still own shares worth over $2 billion.

That makes Bill Ackman a genius.

It also means that the vast majority of the 6,000 CPR employees made redundant by Ackman's "reset" of the CPR will be a burden to the Canadian taxpayer for years to come. The vast majority of those redundancies have hit workers in middle age who will be forced onto EI and welfare.

Six thousand workers forced onto the dole.

A multi-billion dollar liability for the public purse.

A two billion dollar windfall for the investors.

And all of this is considered fair, just, good business, and perfectly legal.

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