ROBIN HOOD ASSET MANAGEMENT COOPERATIVE
A first aid material set for new comers:
ROBIN HOOD ECONOMICS, POLITICS AND AESTHETICS
The Activist Hedge Fund by Brett Scott
Brett Scott, the author of Heretic’s Guide to Global Finance, on why he thinks Robin Hood is so important – and most of all, why Robin Hood is never lame.
A discussion about the future and history of economy and future and history of politics with economic anthropologists Bill Mauer and Taylor Nelms, What is the magic forest that Robin Hood is trying to build?
A good summary of the first two years of Robin Hood, our starting points and aims, how does the Parasite algorithm work in detail, what is minor asset management, how do we see the relationship between art and politics and economy, what is our ethics, what happened at Kassel Documenta(13), why do we think that Robin Hood is a monster. Probably all the questions we have been asked during the first two years in a concise form.
Robin Hood is a new concept by Akseli Virtanen
A more hard core conceptualization of the problem to which Robin Hood corresponds. How is our subjectivity related to the financialization and precarization, what is semiotic inflation, why do we think that economy has become arbitrary power, and how is it possible to find a way out when there is no way out.
From Arbitrary Power to Morphogenesis by Franco “Bifo” Berardi and Akseli Virtanen
Robin Hood is an experiment in the creation of new social and economic forms. Why is this important? What is the new form of power Robin Hood is dealing with? How does the financialized economic power function? How is it possible to control the uncontrollable? How is it possible to govern a system that is too complex to be governed? What is the relationship between our inability to know everything and economy? Many basic premises behind Robin Hood can be found here.
A discussion between Brian Massumi, Maurizio Lazzarato, Peter Pal Pelbart and Akseli Virtanen about the basic premises of Robin Hood: the end of economy as we used to know it and understanding its new nature, organization and relation to our subjectivity. The question of the future begins from understanding the relationship between the exhaustion of the possible at our disposal and how the production of value functions today. Economy is not anymore a matter of “economics”, it captures and exploits something more profound: the process of singularization and production of new modes of subjectivation based on desire. In Robin Hood Stuttgart Office (June 2014) we were trying think this new situation: How does power work at the end of the economy? What are its means of capturing the future already today? How is machinic surplus value produced? How is singular becoming possible when the mechanisms of accumulation do not restrict themselves only to our actual actions in particular time and space but sink their teeth directly into the molecular, aleatory, the uncertain and indeterminate still in the process of becoming? The concepts developed here – like ontopower, arbitrary power, power signs, machinic enslavement, exhaustion of possible, impossible community – may sound excessive and even extravagant, but they are all mapping the territory on which we already walk. They are thinking very precisely about the nature and organization of “n”, the multitude, and how the power must turn in different ways towards “arbitrariness” and “pure power” (Akseli), or “priming” (Brian), “machinic” (Maurizio), “nihilism” (Peter) after all the “ones” are gone. In this wonderland nothing appears anymore the same.
NEXT STEPS OF ROBIN HOOD
Robin Hood is at the moment taking on a new and more monstrous form. Just like Bitcoin broke the taboo of money and showed that money can be engineered, we are now engineering in similar way more financial instruments. We are developing a series of new P2P financial services that correspond to the needs of new kind of economic operators, precarious workers, makers, co-creators, peers, collaborators, movements –which are often collective– and simply do not have available means of finance that would correspond to what they want to do, and how and when they want to do it. What kind of tools of economic creation would you need?
A short discussion made after our Milan Office (May 2015) which introduces some of the next moves of Robin Hood: digitalization of the cooperative, why we are interested in blockchain, what is the Hood Note, what is Robin Hood doing in Milan Universal Expo, and what are the Robin Hood Projects in which we are about to start investing.
Program of our London Office (August 2015) where the next steps of Robin Hood were pre-launched, tested and developed. Gives a nice overview of the problematic with which we are working at the moment: is the fusion of blockchain technology and finance going to be just an integration of existing financial industry’s business models and political consequences into blockchain – or is it going to be an invention which enables building of new social architecture of finance. (10 min of your time)
A Robin Hood “grey paper” (spring 2015) which lays out the reasons and aims of Robin Hood 2.0. How do we intent to fuse financial and blockchain technologies. And why? What does it mean to produce more equity, more options and more assemblage for our operators, more efficiently, in more dimensions.
The Tale of Robin Hood Retold by Tiziana Terranova
Robin Hood is more poetics than business in any traditional sense. It is rethinking the relation between financialization and social cooperation. It is about subjectivity and its “becoming”. It has implications to understanding how imagination, or learning from things that have not happened yet, can be used to creating new social architectures. Robin Hood is a play in the future, and as a play, it requires the engagement of its members, or “operators”, for making it real. To assess it with rational financial logic is to undervalue its true meaning and potential strategic impact: It is an aesthetic rather than a calculation, and a minor rather than a major enticement to novel thinking and to the creation of new opportunities, even when they are precarious. (10 min of your time)
Is it possible to use capital against capital? Carlo Vercellone on Robin Hood
Brian Massumi, Jaromil, Vinay Gupta, Ian Grigg, Robert Meister, Andrea Fumagalli etc. on Robin Hood and the future of finance
ROBIN HOOD STUTTGART OFFICE: OFFICE INFO, WORKING AGENDA, TIMETABLE
Investment Bank of the Precariat
“Robin Hood is an initiative which joins cultural and economical activity in a radical way. The possible profits will be used to fund interesting projects or maybe they are given to free someone from a debt trap. When the financial world meets its challenger, we can also start talking in a new way about where is the future of Europe and how should we invest in it – not only financially, but in a way that creates something new – Robin Hood member of the board, professor Liisa Välikangas, Aalto University School of Business
“Robin Hood is an artwork of social imagination, which opens into a question of the financial crisis, the future of Europe and the necessary mutation of banking industry. It is worth observing that the most interesting and sharp thought about coming economy and European crisis comes from the sphere of art.” – Robin Hood member of the board, artist Teemu Mäki, Helsinki and Berlin
“Robin Hood is another way to Occupy Wall Street” – Robin Hood member, professor Luca Guzzetti, University of Genova
“What a Satanic Project!!” – Robin Hood member, Franco Berardi, Bologna
“Robin Hood is a method to share risks and possibilities of the financialized economy and precarized labour market. Together. We hedge precarity.” – Robin Hood chairman of the board, docent Akseli Virtanen, UCSC
“Robin Hood is the first anarcho-communist hedge fund based on the principles of Deleuze and Guattari. It takes off where George Soros and his anti-cyclical theories cashed out decades ago. Instead of further colonizing tiny time segments as quants continue to do, Robin Hood mobilizes the global critical intelligence of the anonymous masses and is thus able to foresee the next financial meltdown within the transactional logic of the present. Stop wasting your micro assets on sustainable feel-good projects of the guilt-driven liberal classes, join the wild party of Robin Hood and collectively crash Wall Street!” – Johan Sjerpstra, Amsterdam
“Absolutely brilliant” – prof. Geert Lovink, Institute for Network Cultures, Amsterdam
“Robin Hood is potentially dangerous to our reputation” – Tuula Teeri, President of Aalto University, Troops of the Sherif of Nottingham
We established Robin Hood in June 2012 in the middle of the financial crisis and crisis of Europe. The lesson from the background analysis was clear: The financialization of economy is a fact. Precarization is not a passing phenomenon, but becoming the normal way of the organization of labor. Financial market has nothing to do with free competition. The number of banks in the world has decreased in the last 30 year by 40%. Only 10 big investment banks control over 90% of the entire derivative market whose size is estimated to be around 1200-1400 million billion dollars (over 20 times the entire world GNP). During the first three months of 2013 alone, the profit of Goldman Sachs was over 2,26 billion dollars, of HSBC 6,35 billion dollars, JP Morgan 6,53 billion dollars – this in just three months. It is a very lucrative business. And we know about the scams, lies, manipulations and unbelievable bonus systems. The employees and leaders have confessed the manipulation interests rates and exploitation of clients for making profit. The power to create money is in the hands of the financial market, but we have no access to it. Our money is obliged to take part in the market, but we never profit from it. We just carry the risks. There is a deep asymmetry between those who are able to create money by transforming it into financial capital (income not tied to the necessity to work) and those whose only access to money is to work (possibly at any cost) – or first take debt, and then work.
Could we bend the financialization of economy into the advantage of precarious workers? Could we challenge the debt mechanism of control, the command to submit to any work, the limited options we have for financing our living? Could we think of sharing the means of creating capital financial market has in its use, of putting them to work also for all of us? Could we think of a relation to money, not as binding us with debt and to capital relation, but as a means of freedom, escape, and increase of independence? Could we think of profanation of finance, of returning its space to common use and play? Could we reappropriate the power of money, not only as a means of payment and exchange but as a power to command the future?
We think we can. Robin Hood is a counter-investment cooperative of the precariat. We operate a massive data mining algorithm – we call it the “Parasite” – which logs into the brains of the bankers at Wall Street and they don’t even know it. We know who are the best players. We know exactly what they do and when. Robin Hood is our means to share this knowledge. In the first year, the value of our portfolio rose 30,74%. With this result we were the third best hedge fund in the world. Now, after the second year, we are up 40,15% and have about $0,6M assets under management.
Robin Hood’s business is minor asset management. It means sharing and democratizing the power of finance: building on its basis a possibility for basic income, for production of commonfare, for radical project funding, no interest loans for financing one’s studies or life, in a form of an investment cooperative. We call it minor asset management, a possibility of political operation of building from our minor assets financial out-onomy in cooperation.
We are looking for new members.
HOW TO BECOME A MEMBER?
1. Go to www.robinhoodcoop.org and sign as a new member
2. Pay 30€ for the share of the cooperative to its account: Nordea FI4312283000018018
3. Pay also for as many voluntary shares (á 30€) as you want, and one time membership fee (30€)
4. You will receive immediately a confirmation of your booked shares from the cooperative
5. That is it – you have now your own investment cooperative. In the member zone you can follow the development of the value of your shares.
The company is registered as a Finnish cooperative, home location Helsinki
Assets under management: USD 0,6M
Business identity number: 2476214-9
Bank account: Nordea Finland FI4312283000018018
Depositary: City Bank New York
Broker: Interactive Brokers Ltd
Auditing: Ernst & Young Oyj
Protected by US Patent 7835968 and US Patent 8484118
CONTACT INFORMATION: WWW.ROBINHOODCOOP.ORG
Managing Director Teppo Vesikukka teppo(at)robinhoodcoop.org
Chairman of the Board Akseli Virtanen, akseli(at)robinhoodcoop.org
WHAT IS ROBIN HOOD?
Robin Hood is an asset management cooperative, based in Finland and in Silicon Valley, owned by its members, and known for rethinking financial services and means of finance. It’s operation is based on something quite radical in this business: a genuine taking care of member assets, fundamental street credibility, focused attention to the production of commonfare – and unmatchable cost leadership and scalability. We bend the financialization of economy into the benefit of those who have this far only being bearing its costs.
After establishing the cooperative in June 2012, we were able to build in a year a start-up that operated on income funding. At the moment we are looking for partners with whom we can develop Robin Hood to its full potential. The American Robin Hood in Silicon Valley is established at the moment. We are about to begin the next phase of Robin Hood involving a crypto equity IPO and development of an army of parasites.
We are preparing the issuance of a non-cryptocurrency cryptoasset – Hood Note – which is backed up with real assets: not gold, but dynamic portfolio of the stocks of the best companies in the world. This is what we can do. Robin Hood can become a virtual cooperative, a decentralized autonomous organization. With your investment, you would not anymore get a “share” of the cooperative, but notes which give you a partial ownership of the Robin Hood portfolio, but which you can also use, save, sell, give… When you buy a Hood note, and the dollars, yens, euros, bitcoins, faircoins you use for it, are allocated in our portfolio. The value of the coin is always backed by our assets and the net asset value determines the exchange rate. The increase in the value of the portfolio is automatically distributed in the value of the notes, but also partly stored in the Robin Hood Fund and used for Robin Hood Projects. The owners of the notes are the community of users, there will be no artificial constraints of scarcity, and the note would have an ability to operate as a means of production. If we are right, the effects are wild: very strong relatively stability, fundamental transparency, and near to impossibility of manipulation.
ROBIN HOOD IN GERMANY, ROBIN HOOD IN IRELAND
Robin Hood opened this year its first offices in Germany in Stuttgart (June) and next in Berlin (November) and also its first office in Ireland in Dublin. If you are interested please come and meet with us!
Further information about the German offices: Stuttgart Office / Berlin Office / Dublin Office
WHAT HAPPENS THEN?
After you have become a member, we will take the best possible care of your assets – and we think we do this the most cost efficiently in the world – following the consensus action of the best investors in the world. We will then return the profit to members according to the profit-sharing option you have chosen. You can choose the % of the profit (100% – 0%) which you take back to yourself and the % (0%-100%) which you give to the common pool called the Robin Hood Fund. From the Robin Hood Fund we finance together Robin Hood Projects with which we try to turn the commonly created profits into actual common resources: no-interest loans, interesting projects, different forms of producing independence, commonfare etc. The cooperative meeting is the deciding body of cooperative and each member has there one vote regardless of the amount of voluntary shares she/he/it has.
In the first year of operation the value of our portfolio increased 30,74%. We were the third best hedge fund in the world at US stock markets. In 2013 98% of the funds lost against S&P500 – which we use as our comparison index – we beat it, again. From the beginning (August 2012), we are now up 40,15% (31.8.2014). The results of individual investments always depend on which series they began: we begin every month a new series. Our costs – which are ridiculous compared to our competitor elite asset management houses – are reduced from the profit. More assets under management we will get the more efficient we will be. We are an operation of extreme scalability. But always remember: the past results don’t guarantee the future results. See about the risks below.
At the moment the invested assets are in the cooperative always until the end of our fiscal year which always ends in the end of June. After the books of the cooperative for that fiscal year are closed and audited, we will return the profits for all the members. You can then also exit the cooperative.
In other words, Robin Hood operates like the hedge funds and not like the retail funds of banks. It owns stock in other companies as the only asset, and operates with greater flexibility than banks. The investments of members are open ended and withdrawals are allowed only at certain moments of the fiscal year. The value is calculated as a share of the net asset value (NAV), which means that the increases and decreases in the value of cooperative’s investment assets and expenses are directly reflected in the amount a member can later withdraw. This is exactly what hedge funds do too, but what Robin Hood hedges, is precarity – it take’s a position in the financial market to offset and balance risk adopted by assuming a position at a contrary market, the precarious labor market, where so far people have just been paying the bills of financialization by letting it use our capability to assume debt and pay taxes as the main raw material for accumulation of financial assets.
We are at the moment also preparing alternative ways of making the entrance and exit more flexible – the most promising ways are becoming an Alternative Investment Fund Manager and distributed autonomous organization as an cryptoequity.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS?
The increase of risks is what characterizes the transition from the industrial economy into the economy based on knowledge and attention. How do you prepare yourself for something unforeseen, unpredictable, or potential? This question is in the core of Robin Hood, it is why Robin Hood was established. Robin Hood is about sharing the risks and possibilities in this situation. About the risks of Robin Hood portfolio: we constantly monitor Robin Portfolios’ risk parameters: the Sharpe ratio, Sortino ratio and Calmar ratio. For most of the time they have displayed excellent performance. You can find our risk analysis ratios below. However, it is important to understand that our risk level is never static, since we adjust it according to market situation. In traditional terms our risk level is high, since we are investing in stocks, but that is not the whole story. Parasite pulls this risk level down considerably, by using the best expertise of every instrument. One could say our risk to the upside is higher than to the downside.
CUMULATIVE PERFORMANCE COMPARISON WITH S&P500 1.8.2012 – 31.8.2014
The portfolio has comprised of 20-30 stocks throughout the period, no leverage has been used, short positions used occasionally. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Performance and risk measures calculated by Interactive Brokers Ltd.
ROBIN HOOD PORTFOLIO RISK ANALYSIS IN COMPARISON WITH S&P500 1.8.2012 – 31.8.2014
SPX Robin Hood
Ending VAMI 1,452.43 1,396.97
Cumulative performance 45,2% 39,7%
Max Drawdown: 5.61% 9.00%
Peak-To-Valley: 09/14/12 -11/15/12 09/17/12 -11/15/12
Recovery: 34 Days 10 Days
Sharpe Ratio: 1.99 1.47
Sortino Ratio: 1.98 1.48
Calmar Ratio: 5.12 2.82
Standard Deviation: 0.68% 0.84%
Downside Deviation: 0.44% 0.56%
Mean Return: 0.07% 0.07%
Positive Periods 319 (59.18%) 303(56.22%)
Negative Periods: 220 (40.48%) 236 (43.78%)
Sharpe ratio measures how well the return of an asset compensates the investor for the risk taken. When comparing two assets versus a common benchmark, the one with a higher Sharpe ratio provides better return for the same risk (or, equivalently, the same return for lower risk). Sharpe: > 1 = good; > 2 = very good; > 3 = excellent
Sortino ratio measures the risk-adjusted return of an investment portfolio. It is a modification of the Sharpe ratio but penalizes only those returns falling below a user-specified target, or required rate of return, while the Sharpe ratio penalizes both upside and downside volatility equally. Sortino: > 1 = good; > 2 = very good; > 3 = excellent
Calmar ratio is an important statistic used to measure return vs. drawdown risk. It enables an investor to see the potential opportunity gain vs. opportunity loss of investing with a particular fund. Calmar: > 1 = good; > 3 = very good; > 5 = terrific
Robin Hood der Wall Street/ REVUE Magazine for the Next Society
Der Trittbrettfahrer [The Freeloaders. Robin Hood hammers the financial world with its own metdhos] (available here as pdf) / Brand Eins – Wirtschaftsmagazin
Wissen ist Macht, Teilen ist Zukunft [Knowledge is Power, Sharing is Future] / The Finnish Institute in Germany
Robin Hood is a Parasite / Institute for The Future, Palo Alto
21st Century Robin Hood introduces altruism into investment banking / Huffington Post
Robin Hood hacker börsen [Robin Hood hacks the stock exchange]/ Arena Magazin
Parasiittina pörssikaupoilla [As a Parasite at the Stock Exchange] / Voima Magazine
Финские робин гуды выходят на фондовые биржи [Robin Hoods Trading at the Stock Exchange] / New Horizons Business Magazine
Is Robin Hood art or business or politics? / Aalto TV
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