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April hedge fund asset flows slow to the smallest growth rate to start a year on record +0.2%

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Bailey McCann, Opalesque New York: Investor flows for hedge funds were effectively flat during the April and YTD net inflows of $5.8bn in the first four months is the slowest growth to start a year on record, according to the latest asset flow data from eVestment. The worst start for the industry was in 2009 when outflows from the financial crisis were still extremely high and reached $260bn. Performance gains added $30.5bn, bringing total top line assets to $2.693tn.

In terms of strategies, investors still showed a preference for credit strategies above all else during the month. Long/short equity, macro, managed futures and commodity fund universes all experienced net redemptions in April and YTD 2013. Long/short equity strategies have had redemptions in 20 of the last 22 months.

Institutions are largely driving the hedge fund space, and allocation trends for 2013, generally replicate what was seen in 2012. "Should 2013 flows continue to follow a path similar to that of 2012, then the industry may not see a meaningful influx of capital again until early in the second half of the year," writes Peter Laurelli, VP and head of research, eVestment in the report.

Investor sentiment towards global macro appears to have finally caught up to the universe’s mediocre aggregate performance. Despite relatively poor returns in 2012 macro funds continued to have net investor inflows during the year, but that incongruity ......................

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