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Tickers in this Article: GLD, AU, BAC, C, HIG, GS, DIA
Regular investors routinely "coattail" the securities holdings of mutual funds, portfolio managers and high profile investors in hopes of generating a high rate of return. Some superstar managers are particularly closely watched due to their impressive track record and experiences. As a consequence of his actions during the 2007 financial crisis that resulted in billions of dollars of profit for his hedge fund, investors are now keeping an eye on John Paulson.

IN PICTURES: World's Greatest Investors

Paulson is currently a hedge fund manager at Paulson & Co. His claim to fame was in making a controversial bet against collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) during a time when the popularity of mortgage backed securities was still peaking. While the counterparty to the bet, Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS), did run into some trouble with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Paulson received nothing but praise for his actions.

Smashing Returns
But whether you approve of Paulson & Company's workings may be beside the point. If you're invested with him, you're no doubt happy. In October of 2007, when the Dow Jones Industrial Average was setting all time highs above 14,000, Paulson's fund had a net asset value of some $7.7 billion.


Since then, as we all know, the Dow has dropped 15%, as measured by the SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF (NYSE:DIA). Yet Paulson's fund has grown by a tremendous 175% and was worth $22.9 billion as of the last quarter of 2010. The fund's growth occurred during what is commonly figured to be one of the worst market downturns in the last hundred years.

Paulson's Holdings
Here are a list of Paulson and Co's top holdings:

Company
Market Cap
% Composition
SPDR Gold Trust (NYSE:GLD)
57.11B 17.6%
AngloGold Ashanti Limited (NYSE:AU)
16.32B
8.28%
Bank of America Corp. (NYSE:BAC)
150.97B
7.88%
Citigroup(NYSE:C)
149.55B
7.24%
Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. (NYSE:HIG)
12.57B
4.41%

Bottom Line
Despite the controversy, John Paulson's record over the last few years makes him a name worth watching. Use the Investopedia Stock Simulator to trade the stocks mentioned in this stock analysis, risk free!


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