Omega Advisors, the firm whose billionaire founder Leon Cooperman reached an insider-trading settlement with U.S. regulators in May, posted an 18 percent gain from one of its stock funds last year, according to a person with knowledge of the returns.

The $700 million Omega Overseas Fund Class A rose 3.7 percent in December, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the information isn’t public. A spokesman for the New York-based firm, which oversaw $3.8 billion as of Nov. 30, declined to comment on the returns.

The fund outpaced the broader industry as the performance gulf between stock and macro strategies persisted. Omega Overseas also beat the average for equity funds, which made about 12 percent last year on an asset-weighted basis, according to data from Hedge Fund Research Inc. The fund trailed the S&P 500 Index, which advanced 22 percent in 2017 with dividends reinvested.

Cooperman, 74, agreed to pay $4.9 million to resolve a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission lawsuit related to allegations of ill-gotten gains, without admitting any wrongdoing. The government had asserted he used his status as one of Atlas Pipeline Partners GP LLC’s largest shareholders to obtain confidential information in 2010. After the settlement, Cooperman lambasted U.S. regulators as “abusive,” saying he would have won at trial but faced far higher legal costs.

Source: Bloomberg

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