NEW YORK, April 27 (Reuters) - Billionaire hedge fund manager Dan Loeb believes that recent market volatility still offers "excellent opportunities" to make money despite a "catastrophic" period for hedge fund performance, according to a letter sent to clients of his Third Point LLC on Tuesday seen by Reuters.
"As most investors have been caught offsides at some or multiple points over the past eight months, the impulse to do little is understandable," Loeb wrote in the letter. "We are of a contrary view that volatility is bringing excellent opportunities."
Loeb, who runs New York-based Third Point with $17 billion of assets under management, said "we are in the first innings of a washout in hedge funds and certain strategies. We believe we are well-positioned to seize the opportunities borne out of this chaos and are pleased to have preserved capital through a period of vicious swings in treacherous markets."
Those investment opportunities, Third Point said in the letter, include bets based on corporate events such as mergers and acquisitions, including the combination of Dow Chemical Co. and E. I. du Pont de Nemours.
"With the right management, structure, and a synergy target that looks conservative in light of the prospect for more sweeping change, we believe we have a compelling long term investment in Dow/DuPont," the letter said.
The Third Point Offshore Fund fell 2.3 percent in the first quarter, according to a separate investor communication reviewed by Reuters. The S&P 500 Index gained 1.3 percent over the same period, while the average hedge fund, as represented by the Hedge Fund Intelligence Americas Composite Index, fell 0.42 percent.
A spokesman for Third Point did not immediately respond to a request for comment. (Reporting by Lawrence Delevingne; Editing by Jennifer Ablan and Alan Crosby)