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Alternative Market Briefing

Europe – headache and hope for hedge fund managers

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Beverly Chandler, Opalesque London - SEB’s Northern European Financial Group reports that all major hedge fund strategies showed negative results in 2011, with Equity Hedge performing the absolute worst with a downturn of 19.1%.

The firm found that the continued debt crisis and expectations of poorer corporate profits are likely to have a continued negative impact during the first quarter of 2012. "he probability of a recession in the euro zone has increased, and support for this view is visible in prices, which should indicate that market players have probably already discounted many of the negatives" they said.

Previously considered "safe" government securities also lost some ground during the October risk rally, when both the investment grade and high yield markets rose substantially. "Managers must remain tactical and agile, but the investment opportunities are good, especially for high yield corporate bonds, which have not kept up with the broader upturn".

The Northern European team reports that many hedge fund managers still see Europe as the most important area to watch in the near future. "Although the liquidity situation has improved the fact remains that there are extremely large government loans that will fall due and will need to be refinanced in the first quarter of 2012. The turmoil surrounding Greece and continued geopolitical tensions in the Middle East should create intere......................

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