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Alternative Market Briefing

Japan expects more hedge funds to open shop in Tokyo

Monday, September 23, 2013

Precy Dumlao, Opalesque Asia:

Japan’s market regulator, the Financial Services Agency, is hoping Tokyo will attract more foreign hedge funds to put up shop in the country since the agency relaxed its rules to open investment management business there.

According to a report by Financial News, data from Eurekahedge indicated that there are 55 locally-registered hedge funds with offices in Japan, but only 20 are domiciled in the country. But despite the relaxation of the rules, there are still significant challenges that make the entry of foreign hedge funds to Japan difficult, the report said.

The report quoted Kazuho Suzuki, chief operating officer and co-founder of global macro specialist Edgebell as saying, "Prior to the changes, the regulatory hurdles for institutional hedge funds were very high. Before opening for business you had to hire at least seven people as investment managers and then wait a year before getting a license – while paying those seven people. You also needed ¥50 million ($50,000) of capital."

The changes were introduced by the FSA in April 2012 specifically to attract institutional investors by easing the requirements for capital the number of hired employees. But the new rule also doubled the capital to ¥10 million ($100,000) but reduced t......................

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