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Alternative Market Briefing

Hedge funds start 2013, much like 2012 - equities and emerging markets on the rise

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Bailey McCann, Opalesque New York: Hedge funds are starting the year off much like the last, with an early rally in equities and emerging markets followed by credit. According to new data from eVestment, in January, hedge funds performance was broadly positive, and driven by long-biased equity market exposures across both developed and emerging markets with credit and commodity strategies firmly positive. January’s average return of +2.79% surpasses the +2.59% gain in January 2012, and was the second best opening month in the last twelve years behind the +3.25% in January 2006, the report notes.

Long/Short funds had their best month since May 2009, performance in this space is likely driven by Japan focused funds which reported returns of approximately 8.4% for January. Japan's equity markets have been on the rise this month with a push from the Bank of Japan. Credit strategies are following close behind, 87% of funds in the index reported positive returns in January, the median return for this strategy was 1.1%. Data shows the return for credit may have been slightly muted due to a concentrated loss centered on Argentinean debt. (Read our coverage of the Argentinean debt holdouts here.)

FX strategies are off to their best start in over a year as well, driven by moves in the Yen and British Pound. The boost in FX and slightly higher commodity prices......................

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