Scott Minerd, financier of Guggenheim Partners, dies aged 63

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Scott Minerd, global chief investment officer at Guggenheim Partners, has died after suffering a heart attack during regular training, the Chicago-based financial firm announced Thursday.

A former competitive bodybuilder, Minerd joined the Guggenheim shortly after its founding in 1999. He became a well-known market commentator, delivering pronouncements on macroeconomic trends that were closely followed by investors and on Twitter, where his followers numbered 169,000. He was considered one of the great bond investors of recent decades.

Minerd, 63, was a prominent face at the Guggenheim, which has grown from the private investment office of the wealthy Guggenheim family to one of the biggest money managers in the United States, with $285 billion in assets. He was also a leading adviser to US central bankers as a member of the Financial Markets Advisory Committee of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

“I’ve known Scott for over 30 years and we’ve been partners for most of that time. Scott was a key innovator and thought leader who was instrumental in building Guggenheim Investments into the global business it is today,” said Mark Walter, CEO and founder of Guggenheim Partners in a statement. “He will be greatly missed by everyone. My deepest condolences are with her husband, family and loved ones.”

The Financial Times reported in 2017 that Minerd and Walters had been embroiled in a years-long power struggle over the direction of the company they built together and had clashed heatedly over specific personnel decisions. The two came close to breaking up, but finally decided it would be better for them to work together.

Born and raised in Pennsylvania, Minerd attended the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago and briefly worked at Price Waterhouse. He then moved to Wall Street, doing stints at Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley as a bond trader and later working closely with Bob Diamond, later chief executive of Barclays, while both were at Credit Suisse First Boston. Minerd then retired to Southern California at age 30.

In the late 1990s, he met Walter, who ran an insurance and investment firm, Liberty Hampshire, which would eventually become the foundation of Guggenheim Partners.

Guggenheim, known for its secretive culture, became a Wall Street powerhouse featuring not only Minerd but also Todd Boehly, now CEO of Eldridge Industries and co-owner of Chelsea Football Club in the UK and the Los Angeles Dodgers of Major League Baseball. Later, the firm would move into investment banking with chief advisor to senior executives, Alan Schwartz, heading up its Guggenheim bond business.

Minerd was a fixture of the Los Angeles financial scene and a friend and acolyte of Michael Milken. Married to Eloy Mendez🇧🇷 he has long resided in Santa Monica but recently purchased two condos in Florida. Minerd was also a major benefactor of the Union Rescue Mission, Los Angeles’ oldest and largest emergency shelter, and served on the board of overseers of the Hoover Institution, a free-market conservative think-tank.

Bodybuilding was one of Minerd’s greatest passions. After moving to Venice Beach, Los Angeles, he joined Gold’s Gym, known for being a mecca for weightlifters and home to the likes of Arnold Schwarzenegger. In his prime, Minerd could lift 495 pounds 20 times and competed in the Super Heavyweight division, according to a Bloomberg interview.

“Scott was a master of fixed income – brilliant at deciphering intermediate and long-term changes in interest rates. He was a dear friend and supporter. I will miss him,” wrote Bill Gross, founder of bond-focused investment house Pimco.