Bre-X shorter says beware management 'dream teams'

INVESTORS in the resources sector are commonly told to back successful management teams in order to maximise their chances of enjoying a big market win. While there’s arguably some merit to this thesis, professional investors like Warren Irwin treat market maxims like this with a high level of scepticism.

Bre-X shorter says beware management 'dream teams' Bre-X shorter says beware management 'dream teams' Bre-X shorter says beware management 'dream teams' Bre-X shorter says beware management 'dream teams' Bre-X shorter says beware management 'dream teams'

Irwin, who runs hedge fund Rosseau Asset Management out of Toronto and who apparently made his name 20 years ago shorting Bre-X, suggests management teams put-together and backed by brokers and investment banks command such a premium that the risk-reward trade-off is often skewed the wrong way for most investors.

Speaking at PDAC last week, Irwin noted the chances of finding an economic deposit are put by the industry at about three in 1000.

His mathematics degree tells him that the chances of a team going back-to-back are therefore nine-in-one-million.

Which is not to say back-to-back wins can't, and don't, happen, Irwin said.

It's just that they often have "valu...