Wall Street billionaire: Babies kill women’s focus


Hedge fund billionaire Paul Tudor Jones touched off a firestorm after The Washington Post obtained a video where he says you will never see as many great women investors or traders as men because they have babies–which are distracting.

“And as soon as that baby’s lips touched that girl’s bosom, forget it. Every single investment idea, every desire to understand what’s going to make this go up or go down is going to be overwhelmed by the most beautiful experience which a man will never share about a mode of connection between that mother and that baby. I just see it happen over and over,” he said at a symposium at the University of Virginia.

Jenna Johnson broke the story and obtained the video after filing a freedom of information request. She described the other panelists laughing nervously and leaning away with their  body language.

“But none of them came out and said, ‘You’re wrong Paul, that’s not the way it should be,’” Johnson said on Jansing & Co.

“It reminded me of women are too emotional to be, as they used to say, emergency room doctors, litigators, pilots,” said Lynn Povich, a former Newsweek senior editor and author of ”The Good Girls Revolt: How the Women of Newsweek sued their Bosses and Changed the Workplace.”

“When I started they weren’t credible enough to do real news,” Chris Jansing added.

Povich sued Newsweek in 1970, along with 45 other women, for discrimination and won. Now 43 years later she’s still talking about the struggles of women in the workplace.

“The work family issues for women who are still primarily responsible for taking care of children without any public or private for daycare or paid leave is a problem. And that’s why we have to restructure the workforce that’s built for the 50’s, for the Mad Men era,” Povich said.

The Washington Post reported that several alumnae and female faculty members complained to the university after the event.

Jones later issued a statement to The Washington Post, reading in part:

My off the cuff remarks at the University of Virginia were with regard to global macro traders, who are on-call 24/7 and of whom there are likely only a few thousand successful practitioners in the world today…Life events, such as birth, divorce, death of a loved one and other emotional highs and lows are obstacles to success in this specific field of finance.

Jones also noted that he had encouraged his three daughters to pursue careers macro trading.