By Mina Kawai – May 22, 2010 Email Share Print
John Paulson’s Paulson Credit Opportunities Fund topped the list of 100 best-performing hedge funds over the past three years, Barron’s reported.

The $4-billion portfolio, part of the New York-based Paulson & Co. Inc.’s $32 billion of assets under management, returned almost 123 percent annually, the weekly newspaper said in its May 24 edition.

Paulson’s fund was followed by the $1-billion Balestra Capital Partners, run by James Melcher, which posted an annual return of 65.6 percent. James Simons’ $9-billion Medallion Fund, which returned 62.8 percent, took the third spot on the list. The $1.2-billion Element Capital, which returned 45 percent, and the $333-million Providence MBS Offshore, with a gain of just over 44 percent, rounded out the top five performers.

The average return of the top 100 funds was 20.8 percent, compared with 2.2 percent for all hedge funds and a loss of almost 16 percent for the equity market, according to Barron’s. Each of the listed funds advanced at least 10 percent.

The list was compiled in cooperation with BarclayHedge and Morningstar/CISDM. The funds were ranked based on their three- year compound annual return and included funds with assets of at least $300 million.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mina Kawai in New York at