FlyTitle: Hedge funds

Why the financial elite are moving out of their former haven

为什么金融精英们正在搬离昔日的避风港

经济学人双语版-资本的乡村之家 The country home of capital

IT IS A small town with a big reputation. Greenwich, Connecticut, with a population of 60,000, has long been home to titans of finance and industry. A century ago Edmund C. Converse, the first president of Bankers Trust, Zalmon Gilbert Simmons, a mattress magnate, and two Rockefellers lived there. Among today’s residents are Ray Dalio of Bridgewater, the world’s most successful hedge fund, and Indra Nooyi, the former boss of Pepsi. It has one of America’s greatest concentrations of wealth. As measured by the income of the top 1% of residents, Connecticut is America’s richest state. The metro area (Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk) and county (Fairfield) containing Greenwich come second and fourth on the same measure.

康涅狄格州的格林威治虽然只是个六万人口的小镇,却声名在外。长期以来这里都是金融和实业巨头的聚居地。一个世纪以前,信孚银行(Bankers Trust)的首任总裁埃德蒙·康弗斯(Edmund C. Converse)、床垫大王扎尔蒙·吉尔伯特·席梦思(Zalmon Gilbert Simmons)和两名洛克菲勒家族的成员都曾居住于此。如今这里的住户包括世界最成功的对冲基金公司桥水(Bridgewater)的雷伊·达利欧(Ray Dalio)和百事的前老板卢英德(Indra Nooyi)。这里是美国财富集中度最高的地方之一。如果以排名前1%的居民收入来衡量,康涅狄格州是美国最富有的州。以同样的标准衡量,格林威治所在的布里奇波特-斯坦福德-诺沃克和费尔菲尔德则分别是美国第二富有的都会区和第四富有的县。

You might think a decade in which rich Americans became richer would have been kind to Greenwich. Not so. The 2007-08 financial crisis and hedge funds’ fading fortunes depleted the state’s coffers. In response it raised taxes, triggering an exodus that has lessons for the rest of America about the risks of relying on low taxes to lure wealthy residents. And as Americans cool on small-town living, Greenwich is a reminder that even the most privileged enclave is not immune to national trends.

你可能以为,美国富人变得更富的十年对格林威治来说应该是件好事。并非如此。2007到2008年的金融危机以及对冲基金公司的财富缩水导致康州的财政枯竭。州政府于是提高了税收,引发大批人员外流。这给美国其他地区上了一课,即靠低税收来吸引富人定居是有风险的。随着美国人不再那么向往小镇生活,格林威治的经历也提醒人们,在全国性的趋势面前,即使是最优越的飞地也难以幸免。

A century ago Greenwich’s selling points included the absence of mosquitoes and malaria. It has always been beautiful, too, with a white-sand beach and verdant surrounding hills—and convenient for New York. The super-rich drawn by such delights built homes to match. In the early 1900s a Rockefeller built a 64-room mansion in the Georgian style. Other residents built replicas of Warwick Castle and the Petit Trianon at Versailles. One had a Tudor cottage dismantled, shipped from Britain and put together again.

一个世纪前,格林威治的卖点之一是没有蚊子和疟疾。这里的风景一贯优美——沙滩洁白,青山环绕。从这里去纽约也很方便。被这些亮点吸引而来的超级富豪们建造了与美景交相映衬的住宅。20世纪初,洛克菲勒家族的一位成员建造了一座有64个房间的乔治亚风格的宅邸。其他住户建造的房屋中,有的仿照英国华威城堡(Warwick Castle),有的仿照凡尔赛宫苑的小特里阿农宫(Petit Trianon)。还有一座都铎式的小别墅是在英国拆卸后运到这里重新组装起来的。

But Greenwich would never have become a powerhouse of 20th-century finance without low taxes. Until 1991 Connecticut levied no tax on personal incomes at all. The hedge-fund types attracted to Greenwich propelled its property market to even greater excess. Paul Tudor Jones II, who founded a hedge fund in the town in 1980, modelled his mansion on Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello estate—with the addition of a 25-car garage. In 1998 Steven Cohen, the founder of SAC Capital Advisors, bought a house for an unheard-of $14.8m in cash. In 1999 Eddie Lampert of ESL Investments bought a $21m beachfront estate, only to tear it down and rebuild it.

但如果没有低税收,格林威治永远不会成为20世纪的金融重镇。在1991年之前,康州完全没有个人所得税。被吸引到格林威治的对冲基金人员进一步推高了当地房地产市场的泡沫。1980年,保罗·都铎·琼斯二世(Paul Tudor Jones II)在这里创办了一家对冲基金公司,他模仿托马斯·杰斐逊的蒙蒂塞洛庄园(Monicello)建造了自己的宅邸——还多了一个可停放25辆汽车的车库。1998年,SAC资本顾问公司(SAC Capital Advisors)的创始人史蒂文·科恩(Steven Cohen)以空前的1480万美元现金买下了这里的一栋房屋。1999年,ESL投资公司(ESL Investments)的埃迪·兰伯特(Eddie Lampert)花2100万美元买下一处滨海宅邸,结果竟把它拆掉重建。

Some financiers decided to skip the commute and make Greenwich their business base as well. It was the home of Long-Term Capital Management from its founding in 1994 to its implosion in 1998. By the early 2000s a third of its commercial property was occupied by hedge funds, and rents on Greenwich Avenue rivalled those on Park Avenue.

一些金融家为免于通勤之苦,把自己的业务总部也设在了格林威治。长期资本管理公司(Long-Term Capital Management)从1994年成立到1998年崩塌,一直将总部设在这里。到本世纪初,格林威治三分之一的商业地产都为对冲基金公司所用,格林威治大道的租金与纽约公园大道(Park Avenue)不相上下。

Then came the crash, which wiped out many fund managers. To plug the hole in state finances, Connecticut increased income taxes three times. It then discovered the truth of the adage “easy come, easy go”. In 2017 Mr Tudor Jones sold his hedge fund’s Greenwich campus, trimmed staff and moved to nearby Stamford. Others moved to Florida, which still has no income tax—and no estate tax. Mr Lampert moved his fund and family to Miami in 2012. Most of Wexford Capital’s staff moved to Palm Beach in 2014. Mr Tudor Jones now lives in Palm Beach and has an office there.

然后金融危机来了,许多基金经理丢了工作。为填补财政缺口,康州三次上调了所得税。“来得容易去得快”这句谚语随即在康州得到了印证。2017年,都铎·琼斯卖掉了他的对冲基金公司在格林威治的房产,裁减员工,搬到了附近的斯坦福德(Stamford)。也有人搬去了仍然没有所得税和遗产税的佛罗里达州。2012年,兰伯特把公司和家迁至迈阿密。2014年,韦克斯福德资本(Wexford Capital)的大部分员工都搬到了佛罗里达州的棕榈滩(Palm Beach)。都铎·琼斯现在住在棕榈滩,并在那里设立了办公室。

In the past decade Greenwich has also been at the sharp end of a national trend: as cities have become safer and nicer, Americans have become less keen on midsized towns. Its housing mix exacerbates the problem. Today’s homebuyers prefer walkable neighbourhoods and are willing to trade space for location. Even the richest have cooled on vast back-country estates.

过去十年,格林威治还受到一股全国性趋势的迎头冲击:随着城市变得更安全和宜居,美国人已不再那么热衷于中型城镇。格林威治不同收入阶层混居的模式也加剧了这一问题。如今购房者更喜欢适于步行的街区,宁愿空间小一点,也要位置好一些。就连首富们也对位置偏远的大宅失去了兴趣。

Leaving Greenwich has therefore often meant accepting a low offer. Thomas Peterffy, the founder of Interactive Brokers, saw his 80-acre estate languish unsold for years after he left for Florida in 2015. Initially priced at $65m, it eventually sold for $21m. “You can’t give away a house in Greenwich,” Barry Sternlicht of Starwood Capital complained—somewhat hyperbolically—when he moved to Florida in 2016.

如此一来,搬离格林威治常常意味着要低价卖掉房屋。盈透证券(Interactive Brokers)的创始人托马斯·彼得菲(Thomas Peterffy)2015年搬去了佛罗里达,那之后的好几年里他在格林威治占地80英亩的房产都无人问津。起初开价6500万美元,最后以2100万美元卖出。喜达屋资本(Starwood Capital)的巴里·史特里克(Barry Sternlicht)2016年搬到佛罗里达时不无夸张地抱怨道:“在格林威治,房子白送都没人要。”

Between 2015 and 2016 Connecticut lost more than 20,000 residents—including 2,050 earning more than $200,000 per year. The state’s taxable-income base shrank by 1.6% as a result, according to Marc Fitch at the Yankee Institute for Public Policy, a conservative think-tank. Its higher income taxes have bitten harder since 2018, when President Donald Trump limited state and local tax deductions from income taxable at the federal level to $10,000 a year.

从2015年到2016年,从康州搬走的居民超过两万人,其中有2050人年收入超过20万美元。保守派智库扬基公共政策研究所(Yankee Institute for Public Policy)的马克·费奇(Marc Fitch)表示,受此影响,康州应税收入的税基缩减了1.6%。自2018年起,特朗普将联邦所得税应税收入中州和地方所得税的抵扣上限设定为每年一万美元,康州高所得税的不良影响就更大了。

Greenwich offers two lessons for policymakers to ponder. The first is that low taxes can help create a business hub that, once established, survives when they are raised. It is still home to enough hedge funds that their clients visit frequently—a good enough reason for hedge funds to be in town. Of the $3.6trn-worth of capital managed by hedge funds globally, $340bn is managed in and around Greenwich.

格林威治为政策制定者提供了两个值得深思的启示。其一,低税收有助于创建一个商业中心,这个商业中心一旦建立,即使税收提高也能维持下来。格林威治仍然有很多对冲基金公司,吸引它们的客户频频造访——这足以让对冲基金公司落户于此。全球对冲基金公司管理的3.6万亿美元的资本中,有3400亿美元由在格林威治及其周边地区的基金管理。

The town’s industry grandees are trying to amplify these network effects. Bruce McGuire, the president of the Connecticut Hedge Fund Association, helped launch the Greenwich Economic Forum in 2018. Among the speakers were Mr Dalio, Mr Tudor Jones and Mohamed El Erian, a former chief executive of PIMCO. Last year’s event drew investors representing more than $5trn-worth of capital.

格林威治的行业巨头正试图扩大这些网络效应。2018年,康州对冲基金协会(Connecticut Hedge Fund Association)主席布鲁斯·麦奎尔(Bruce McGuire)帮助发起了格林威治经济论坛(Greenwich Economic Forum)。演讲者包括达利欧、都铎·琼斯,以及太平洋投资管理公司(PIMCO)的前CEO穆罕默德·埃尔·埃里安(Mohamed El Erian)。去年论坛吸引来的投资者管理着超过五万亿美元的资本。

Indeed, Greenwich has become a commuter destination in its own right. In 2018 the number of inward commuters started to exceed those commuting out. AQR Capital Management, which manages $185bn in assets, employs many of them. Take the Metro-North from Grand Central and you cannot miss its offices—a vast black glass box that looms over the tracks.

事实上,格林威治已经凭借其自身特质成为了通勤者的目的地。2018年,到这里上班的人开始超过去外面上班的人。他们当中有很多就职于管理着1850亿美元资产的AQR资本管理公司(AQR Capital Management)。从纽约中央车站搭乘大都会北方铁路(Metro-North)的火车,你不会错过这家公司的办公楼——铁路旁赫然耸立的一个巨大的黑色玻璃盒。

But the second policy lesson is that low taxes cut both ways. Some of those who found it easy to move in will also find it easy to move on. If Florida ever needs to raise taxes, it may find the same.

但第二个政策启示是低税收是把双刃剑。一些公司发现搬来容易,搬走也不难。如果佛罗里达哪天真需要增税,可能会面临同样的后果。

Greenwich and pleasant land

格林威治,宜居之地

Meanwhile, Greenwich’s non-fiscal charms remain. “It is a wonderful place to live and raise a family,” says Mr Dalio. In 2018 house prices stabilised in many neighbourhoods, and transactions started to pick up. Last November Tom Brady, an American footballer, and his wife, Gisele Bündchen, a Brazilian supermodel, bought a house there. Hedge funds’ heyday may be over, but their country home lives on. ■

与此同时,格林威治与财政无关的魅力依然留存。“这是个生活和居家的好地方。”达利欧说。2018年,许多街区的房价趋于稳定,交易量开始回升。去年11月,美国橄榄球运动员汤姆·布雷迪(Tom Brady)和妻子、巴西超模吉赛尔·邦辰(Gisele Bündchen)在此买下一栋房屋。对冲基金公司的鼎盛期可能已经过去,但它们的乡村之家继续存在。