their best quarter since Q3 2009
After experiencing the best start to a year since 2000, hedge funds paused for a breather during March,delivering a marginally negative performance. With the exception of the US, most markets across theglobe registered declines and the
Eurekahedge Hedge Fund Index
dipped 0.14% in March with the MSCIWorld Index up by 0.39% for the month.Key highlights for March 2012:
Long/short equity, multi-strategy and relative value funds witnessed their best quarter since 3Q2009 with gains of 6.1%, 4.93% and 4.29% respectively.
Assets in hedge funds crossed US$1.76 trillion, gaining over US$50 billion during the first threemonths of 2012.
Long-only absolute return funds saw gains of 11.4% in the first quarter of this year.
Hedge fund managers employing non-conventional strategies have grown their assets toUS$63.2 billion, their highest level since August 2008.
Relative value managers reached US$50 billion of capital for the first time on record.
Islamic funds outperformed other alternative vehicles, gaining 0.63% during March 2012.
More than 100 hedge funds have been launched globally as at the end of March this year.
March was a month filled with mixed returns across the various regional investment mandates. Earlyresults showed that Latin American hedge funds delivered the best performance this month and the
Eurekahedge Latin American Hedge Fund Index
gained a notable 0.80% despite most emerging marketswitnessing sell-offs during this period – evident in the 3.50% decline in the MSCI Emerging MarketsIndex. Managers invested in the region had taken cautious positions in the Brazilian market-based risksof overvaluation and currency. Short positions in Brazil were helpful to portfolios and some managers alsoreported positive returns from long holdings in the broader region.North American managers witnessed their fourth consecutive month of positive returns with the
Eurekahedge North American Hedge Fund Index
gaining 0.46%, bringing its year to date return to 4.63%.Overhang from the high risk aversion and volatility seen in 2H 2011 resulted in some careful positioningby North American hedge funds, effectively preventing most managers from capitalising on the strongpositive trend in 1Q 2012. The S&P 500 gained 12% in the first quarter of 2012, reflecting the best