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Citadel names new commodities head after Ken Griffin's stint

[LONDON] Citadel LLC, the US$26 billion investment firm, appointed Sebastian Barrack as new head of commodities after billionaire founder Ken Griffin ran the unit for several months.

Mr Barrack, previously the co-head of metals, mining and agriculture at Macquarie Group Ltd, will join in July and will be based in Chicago, spokesman Zia Ahmed said by phone.

He will replace Mark Stainton, who moved to head the firm's global equities unit last summer. Mr Griffin, who's also chief executive officer of Citadel, acted as interim head of commodities following the move.

Citadel's commodities business currently invests in natural gas, power, crude and refined products, as well as agriculture. The Chicago-based hedge fund currently doesn't invest in metals after placing this part of the business under review at the end of last year, a source familiar with the matter said at the time.

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Investor interest in commodities has shown signs of recovery after years of outflows that led to the closing of some of the largest and most storied funds. The Bloomberg Commodity Index has gained about 10 per cent in the past year thanks to a surge in raw materials including zinc, cotton and crude.

Mr Barrack was with Macquarie since 1996 and most recently was based in Sydney, according to his LinkedIn profile. His previous positions at the bank included heading metals and agriculture sales and trading, as well as trading sugar.

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