October slammed biotech stocks, and these 3 hedge funds couldn’t escape the pain

  • Biotech hedge funds couldn’t escape a tough October, sources told Insider.
  • Managers like Perceptive Advisors and RTW Investments lost more than 9% in just a month’s time.
  • Nasdaq’s biotech index, with stocks like 23andMe and Moderna, fell by more than 6% last month.

While big-name hedge funds were able to avoid some of the market’s pain last month, biotech specialists were hit hard.

According to sources familiar with their performance, some funds, including Perceptive Advisors, RTW Investments, and San Francisco-based Redmile Group, had a difficult October due to pain in the biotech space.

Perceptive Advisors’ flagship fund, managed by billionaire Joseph Edelman, lost 9.5% in the month, bringing its yearly performance to a loss of 8.7%. RTW, a $5.9 billion company run by Davidson Kempner alum Roderick Wang, dropped 9%, bringing its 2023 losses to 17%.

According to Insider, Redmile Group, a smaller West Coast firm focused on public and private life sciences companies, has also fallen. It fell 7.5% in October and is down 12.5% year to date as of the end of October.

In comparison, the Nasdaq biotech index, which includes over 250 stocks such as AstraZeneca, 23andMe, Moderna, and others, fell 6.4% for the month. The S&P 500 fell 2.2%, marking the third consecutive month of losses.

Perceptive did not respond. Prior to publication, RTW and Redmile did not respond to requests for comment.

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