Billionaire hedge fund manager John Paulson jumped into shares of top energy producers in the fourth quarter, while holding steady with his big bets on gold and financial service firms.
Paulson, who notched the industry's biggest ever payout last year, largely kept his top holdings unchanged but he made noticeable adjustments elsewhere in his multibillion-dollar portfolio.
As the massive BP oil spill faded from investors' memories, Paulson bought 7.2 million shares of rig contractor Transocean (RIGN.VX), whose Deepwater Horizon rig drilled the well that blew out last April.
He also bought 7.8 million shares in Anadarko Petroleum Corp (APC.N), pushing his position in the oil and gas firm to more than 21 million shares. Worth $1.62 billion at the end of the fourth quarter, the Anadarko stake was the fifth-largest bet in Paulson's portfolio.
At the same time, Paulson significantly boosted his share in biotechnology firm Genzyme Corp (GENZ.O) by raising his holdings to 6.8 million shares from about 1.9 million. The company is currently on the cusp of being acquired by French drug maker Sanofi-Aventis (SASY.PA).
The 55-year-old manager, whose Paulson & Co firm now oversees roughly $36 billion, again counted SPDR Gold Trust (GLD.P), AngloGold Ashanti (ANGJ.J), Citigroup (C.N) and Bank of America (BAC.N) as his top four holdings.
He also showed new holdings in a range of healthcare-oriented stocks including Medtronic Inc (MDT.N), Teva Pharmaceutical (TEVA.O) and Baxter International (BAX.N).
For some months Paulson has told investors that he expects the economy to recover.
Perhaps positioning for a resurgence in U.S. consumer spending, in his latest filing Paulson showed a stake in the mid-tier clothing retailer J Crew (JCG.N) but appeared to have removed his holding in budget-oriented Family Dollar Stores (FDO.N).
Last year showed Paulson's winning touch when he managed to right his portfolio late in the year, ensuring more gains for his investors plus a jaw-dropping $5 billion payout for himself.
Only a few years ago Paulson's wildly successful bet that U.S. housing prices would fall broadly earned him a $4 billion payout.