As it turns out, the bad blood between Jeff Gundlach's DoubleLine
] on the one side and Morningstar
on the other is as old as DoubleLine itself.
The dispute between the Los Angeles-based fixed income mutual fund shop and the Chicago-based mutual fund ratings giant is old news
, yet a new Barron's report
by Jonathan Laing sheds light on how it all began.
article reveals that, days before TCW fired
Gundlach and unveiled its planned acquisition of MetWest on December 4, 2009, "several Met West operatives" met with Morningstar's Eric Jacobson
to give the analyst advance notice of Gundlach's impending doom. Upon leaving TCW, Gundlach and a number of his departing colleagues promptly launched DoubleLine.
The new article also includes the revelation that Gundlach actually won the first ballot that December for Morningstar's bond manager of the year award, yet Dan Fuss and his team won
the second vote after Jacobson "hinted to voters that Gundlach and his new start-up DoubleLine were going to be hit by some bad news, according to two people on the conference [teleconference, that is]."
Two weeks later TCW filed a lawsuit against Gundlach, several associates, and DoubleLine, charging theft of trade secrets among other things. The lawsuit garnered headlines with the sensational charge that TCW had found a cache of pornography and marijuana in Gundlach's private office.
So now we know how deep the bad blood runs.
Neil Anderson, Managing Editor
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