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The 5 Smartest Things on Wall Street This Week: Nov. 9

5. Hedgies Help Out

We here at the Dumbest Lab may be well known for shutting up an overbearing hedge fund titan or two. This week, however, we were left speechless when we witnessed a parade of plutocrats putting up.

Their millions that is.

In the wake of Sandy's carnage, and the brutally cold weather that breezed in shortly thereafter, a number of high-profile hedge fund and private equity players dialed up their efforts to provide relief to areas still reeling from the storm. Most notably, the Robin Hood Foundation, a charitable organization originally created by hedge fund honcho Paul Tudor Jones to fight poverty, announced its plans to raise money and provide relief to those without power or a permanent home on the East Coast.

Last Sunday, Robin Hood's chairman Lee Ainslie said the foundation planned to disburse $3 million in immediate aid to regions impacted by Hurricane Sandy. Meanwhile, Ainslie, who is also CEO of hedge fund Maverick Capital Management, told Bloomberg TV that the popular Wall Street charity had raised more than $8 million in a relief fundraising effort over the weekend.

Not bad right? And unlike last Friday night's NBC telethon, these money managers raised big bucks without forcing donors to listen to Billy Joel play Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway) at a New York benefit concert for the second absolutely inappropriate time in a row. (Come on Billy! First the 9/11 concert and now the Sandy benefit? We know you are in a New York state of mind, but we don't need to hear your apocalyptic vision for New York City when we can see it with our own two eyes!)

Aside from Robin Hood's good deeds, investment banks ranging from Citigroup (C - Get Report) to Goldman Sachs (GS) pledged resources and money to relief efforts. JPMorgan (JPM - Get Report) CEO Jamie Dimon said the bank would donate up to $5 million to support the region it calls home. Matching Dimon's goodwill, Goldman said it will give up to $5 million in financial relief efforts, with employees making a matching contribution.

Meanwhile, private equity giants also made a push to contribute much-needed resources to Hurricane Sandy relief.

KKR (KKR) co-founder Henry Kravis, for example, said his multi-million dollar fund aimed at developing New York City businesses will now target relief projects in the aftermath of Sandy. The fund -- called the Partnership for New York City Fund -- has already invested $119 million in New York businesses, according to its Web site, and Kravis told Bloomberg it will look to invest $35 million on post-Sandy revitalization efforts.

Imagine that. The barbarians have left the gate in order to build bridges.

Now there is a warm and fuzzy thought, even if it did take Sandy's cold prickliness to bring it about.
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