Taxes, Schmaxes: Phil Falcone Thinks Goldman Is Just Upset About a Poach

Phil Falcone has a theory about Goldman Sachs.

There was a striking Bloomberg item by Katherine Burton today about the billionaire hedge fund manager, who calls the former Guccione Mansion home and has the most splendiferous wife in the business. She reported that Goldman is pulling its entire $120 million from his main hedge fund, and for a very astounding reason. Mr. Falcone, who has not necessarily been having the best year, and who is harboring controversially grand plans for the next internet superhighway, apparently angered Goldman by borrowing $113 million from one of his funds to “pay personal taxes.” To make matters worse, it was a fund that had suspended redemptions for everyone else.

But over at 450 Park Avenue, where Mr. Falcone’s Harbinger Capital is headquartered, Mr. Falcone is having none of it.

According to a source there, the hedge fund manager believes that Goldman Sachs isn’t actually upset about the $113 million withdrawal for taxes, or even his returns, but is simply still miffed that he successfully poached hedge fund star Omar Asali last year.

Mr. Asali had been the co-head of Goldman Sachs Hedge Fund Strategies, and is said to now be in charge of Harbinger’s global portfolio strategy and analytics, with risk management responsibilities, too.

“We are not commenting at all on the situation. Regards,” a Goldman Sachs spokesperson wrote The Observer.

On the other hand, the Journal is reporting this evening that Blackstone is “among investors” who have also submitted a withdrawal notice to Mr. Falcone. Considering Wall Street, perhaps a feud explains that, too. Taxes, Schmaxes: Phil Falcone Thinks Goldman Is Just Upset About a Poach