Karen Finerman is the co-founder of hedge fund outfit Metropolitan Capital Advisors and a CNBC television personality. Finerman was born in 1965 to a Jewish family in Beverly Hills, California. In 1983, she graduated from Beverly Hills High School. She went on to graduate from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania in 1987.
After graduating, Finerman began her career as a trader at the First City Capital, a risk arbitrage fund for the Belzberg family. Afterwards, she became lead research analyst for the risk arbitrage department at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette. In 1992, while still in her late 20s, Finerman co-founded hedge fund outfit Metropolitan Capital Advisors. Today, she’s built MCA to include six different hedge funds totaling about $350 million, all with a value-focus. According to independent hedge fund reporting agencies, Metropolitan’s flagship fund has delivered an average return of 13.5 percent since inception compared to the S&P’s 9.4 return during the same period. On several different occasions, Finerman and her firm have led and won hostile proxy contests to take control of underperforming public companies- and according to her firm, she is the only woman in the U.S. to have done so multiple times. For example, last year, she started a proxy fight for Cyberonics, which is a biotech firm experimenting with treatments for epilepsy, and managed to bring in a new CEO who returned the company to profitability within a year.
In an unexpected twist to her career, Finerman joined CNBC’s Fast Money in 2007 as a “The Chairwoman” and one of the daily commentators. Originally, she was supposed to be a substitute spot, but it quickly turned into a daily position when the producers realized Finerman brought a woman’s perspective and a longer term investing outlook than the rest of the panelists on the show. In June 2013, her first book, Finerman’s Rules: Secrets I’d Only Tell My Daughters About Business and Life was published by Hachette’ Book Group’s Business Plus. Finerman is a board member of the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research and a trustee of the Montefiore Medical Center. She is also a member of the board of Graftech Internation, Ltd. She is married to Lawrence Golub, CEO and founder of credit asset management company Golub Capital. Finerman and Golub currently reside in the Upper East Side of New York with their four children.