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Citadel billionaire Ken Griffin defends Melvin stake in opposition to ‘an insane conspiracy concept’

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Ken Griffin, the billionaire CEO of hedge fund Citadel, defended his $2 billion funding in brief vendor Gabe Plotkin’s Melvin Capital final month amid the peak of the GameStop mania.

“No, I feel Gabe Plotkin is likely one of the best traders of his technology,” Griffin advised CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin on “Squawk Field.”

The remark was in response to a query from Sorkin about whether or not Griffin’s funding was a mistake as a result of it created questions on Griffin’s motivations in propping up Plotkin amid his battle with retail Reddit merchants who have been pumping up the worth of GameStop.

“If I needed to run my enterprise on the potential of an insane conspiracy concept rising at any cut-off date, I’d don’t have any enterprise,” Griffin mentioned.

In addition to operating hedge fund Citadel, Griffin is the founding father of Citadel Securities, a market maker that handles about 40% of U.S. retail inventory order move, together with from brokerages like free-trading app Robinhood.

After information of the funding from Citadel and Level72 got here out, hypothesis abounded on social media platforms about Griffin’s potential function within the unfolding drama. In a now-deleted tweet, Twitch co-founder Justin Kan mentioned he “obtained a tip” that Griffin could have been concerned in Robinhood’s transfer to throttle entry to GameStop bulls.

In a while, Robinhood defined that it was its clearinghouse, a behind-the-scenes market participant referred to as the Depository Belief and Clearing Corp., that had demanded billions of {dollars} in collateral to again GameStop trades, forcing the brokerage to cut back entry for its customers till it may elevate capital.

Within the wide-ranging interview, Griffin additionally mentioned that there was “little doubt” that the quantity of quick promoting will likely be lowered because of the facility that Reddit-fueled retail merchants demonstrated with GameStop.

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