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Hedge funds reduce bearish stance on ags - a little

Posted on 31 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds reduced, a little, their bearish bets on agricultural commodities, but remained unusually downbeat on price prospects, particularly for the likes of sugar and arabica coffee. Managed money, a proxy for speculators, cut its net short position in futures and options in the top 13 US-traded agricultural commodities, from cotton to cattle, by nearly 24,000 contracts in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator.
It was only the second week of 2015 in which hedge funds’ bets on rising crop prices had exceeded those on price falls. Nonetheless, hedge funds remained, overall, net short - meaning that short bets, which benefit when prices fall, exceeded long positions, which profit when values rise………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Once-bullish fund managers start to capitulate on oil prices

Posted on 30 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Last fall, when the price of oil started dropping, fund manager Craig Hodges figured crude would rebound in 2015 and began buying shares of companies he thought would be unfairly hit, including construction company Primoris Services Corp and Eagle Materials Inc, which produces sand used in fracked wells.
Hodges, who runs the $2.1 billion Hodges Small Cap fund, is now starting to concede that oil prices will stay low for as long as a year or more because of a global glut. Even the air strikes Thursday in Yemen by Saudi Arabia and its Gulf Arab allies, which prompted a one-day 5 percent boost to the price of oil, presented “a traders move” and doesn’t signal a sustained move up, Hodges said. Oil fell 6 percent today to about $48 a barrel………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds bet gold gain to fizzle

Posted on 30 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds are betting that gold’s recent rally won’t last and are holding the biggest wager ever that prices will decline. The net-long position in gold dropped by 9.9 per cent to 31,653 futures and options in the week ended March 24, according to U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data published three days later.
That was the lowest since Dec 2013. Short holdings rose for a seventh straight week to 84,022 contracts, the highest since the data begins in 2006. Even as futures climbed for two straight weeks, some investors have shied away from the metal. Global holdings in exchange-traded products backed by bullion declined every week in March………………………………………..Full Article: Source

The World Bank’s Carbon Fund: Undermining indigenous rights or saving the planet?

Posted on 30 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The World Bank’s emerging Carbon Fund, which provides payments to participating countries that are taking measures to reduce deforestation and carbon emissions, is under scrutiny from civil society leaders and indigenous rights groups, citing its insufficient safeguards to uphold land rights of local and indigenous peoples.
But as industry insiders told Devex, in order to develop a market for carbon that incentivizes the maintenance of forests and achieves results in the face of looming climate change, the World Bank and Carbon Fund donors may need to look beyond a cookie-cutter approach to land rights and remain open to to the political contexts and policies of participating Carbon Fund countries………………………………………..Full Article: Source

New hedge funds net most cash since 2004

Posted on 26 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hungry for returns, investors are giving more new hedge funds a test drive. Funds based in the Americas that launched in 2014 pulled in $34.1 billion, the highest annual total since $39.5 billion was raised in 2004, according to new research from industry news and data provider Absolute Return. The money was spread out over 84 new funds running at least $50 million, the largest total since 86 of the same minimum size were formed in 2006.
The largest fresh fund offerings came from a mix of new and old firms. The largest was the Two Sigma Absolute Return Macro Master Fund from leading quantitative investor Two Sigma. The vehicle raised a whopping $3.3 billion as of Jan. 1………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Ag prices ‘may rebound’, after hedge funds turn most bearish ever

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Agricultural commodity futures may be poised for a wave of support from covering of short bets, after a selldown by hedge funds left them, by a distance, with their most bearish ever positioning. Managed money, a proxy for speculators, dropped long positions on agricultural commodities by more than 40,000 lots in the week to last Tuesday, while hiking short bets – which profit when prices fall - by some 110,000 contracts, regulatory data show.
The resulting swing net short in positioning by 151,826 contracts was the largest in nearly two years. And it drove the overall position into a net short – the extent to which short holdings exceed long ones - of 102,126 lots, by far the biggest on Commodity Futures Trading Commission data going back to 2006………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds get short of US oil as storage fills

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds have turned super-bearish about US oil prices as concerns about running out of storage trump the drop in the number of rigs drilling new wells. Money managers had amassed a record number of short positions in futures and options contracts linked to WTI (West Texas Intermediate) by the end of March 17, equivalent to 209 million barrels of oil, according to the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) latest commitments of traders report published on Friday.
Money managers still have long positions equivalent to 381 million barrels, so overall the sector is still running a net long position. Hedge fund managers have a natural bullish bias. Not once have hedge funds as a whole been net short of WTI futures and options in the last nine years………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Currency hedging takes on new importance for global stock funds

Posted on 23 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

As the dollar surged in the last 12 months, David Marcus, head of the Evermore Global Value fund, steadily increased his stake in Europe. He now has 60 percent of his portfolio invested in companies in the euro zone, the largest stake among any global fund tracked by Lipper.
The gains in those stocks wouldn’t matter if the fund wasn’t actively hedging against euro weakness, which it is, helping the fund rise 8.8 percent so far in 2015, putting it among the top-performing global stock funds this year. “We’re stockpickers, and by hedging currencies we can be pure stockpickers without the currency risk,” said Marcus………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Fund Selector: Should you dig gold?

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In the past, there have been periods when the correlation between gold bullion and the gold equity market has been high. Yet, at the turn of the decade, correlation of sorts fell away quite remarkably.
The price of physical gold continued to perform robustly for a period before softening, while gold-related equity prices came under significant pressure much earlier and tailed away rapidly, dragging the gold-mining index back to levels last seen at the turn of the century when bullion was $350 an ounce. Gold is often perceived as an inflation hedge, which perversely is the environment in which gold equities struggle………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Europe’s quantitative easing pushes hedge funds up 2.25% in February

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The European Central Bank’s extension of aid to Greece and its new EUR 1.1tln stimulus package rallied European equity markets, that helped pushed hedge funds to gain 2.2% last month, said data provider BarclayHedge. It added that the quantitative easing also calmed down deflation fears on rising prices for oil and other commodities.
The Barclay Hedge Fund Index was up 2.14% year-to-date. “Risk factors were largely out of the limelight in February,” says Sol Waksman, founder and president of BarclayHedge. All but one of Barclay’s 18 hedge fund indices had gains in February. The Healthcare & Biotechnology Index jumped 4.49%, equity long bias was up 4.02%, the Event Driven Index gained 3.57%, Pacific Rim Equities rose 2.81%, Distressed Securities added 2.18%, and European equities were up 2.09%………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Preqin: Hedge funds turn the tide on poor 2014 performance

Posted on 18 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge fund managers have got off to a strong start in 2015. Following a year which saw the average hedge fund deliver returns of 3.78%, managers have already returned 2.52% on average two months into the year. Given that performance was named as the key concern in the industry in 2015 by investors in a Preqin survey at the end of 2014, managers will have been keen to deliver strong performance early in the year. The challenge, and opportunity, still remains for hedge funds to continue this performance, particularly amidst strong equity markets and turbulent commodity markets.
Other Key Hedge Fund Performance Stats: Equity Strategies Leading the Pack: All main hedge fund strategies generated positive returns in February 2015, with equity strategies posting the highest monthly return of 3.28%. . Oil Prices Causing Problems: The reversal in falling oil prices led to CTAs generating their lowest monthly return since October 2014, and only just hung on to positive performance with average returns of 0.20%. (Press Release)

Hedge Fund Seeks Zinc, Copper Assets After Finnish Mine Deal

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Audley Capital Advisors is seeking to add to its metals resources after buying Talvivaara Mining Co.’s nickel operation in Finland, according to the former Anglo American Plc executive heading the hedge fund’s mining business.
“I came to Audley with a view to be able to go in and operate some assets,” John MacKenzie, who led copper and zinc operations at Anglo before joining the fund in 2013 as chief executive officer of mining, said in an interview. “Audley Capital is constantly on the lookout for mining opportunities,” including nickel, zinc, copper and metallurgical coal, he said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds cut bullish bets on ags to second lowest on record

Posted on 17 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds cut their bets on rising agricultural commodity prices to the second lowest on record, thanks to more bearish takes on grains and soybeans, and a record net short position in sugar.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, cut its net long position in futures and options in the top 13 US-traded agricultural commodities, from cotton to cattle, by nearly 84,000 contracts in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator. The reduction took the overall net long to 49,700 contracts, the second lowest on data going back to 2006………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge Funds Exit Gold at Fastest Pace in 18 Weeks on Fed Outlook

Posted on 16 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds exited gold at the fastest pace in more than four months on mounting speculation the Federal Reserve is getting closer to raising U.S. interest rates that have been near zero since 2008.
Money managers cut their net-long wagers for a sixth week, U.S. government data show. Investors sold 18.9 metric tons of bullion held through exchange-traded products last week, the biggest reduction since November………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds see second consecutive month of gains, up 1.59% (est.) in February, 2.41% YTD

Posted on 12 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds extended their gains in the second month of 2015, with the Eurekahedge Hedge Fund Index up 1.59% in February, trailing the MSCI World Index which ended the month with a strong finish, gaining 5.47%. All regional and strategic mandates ended the month in positive territory with managers focused on developed markets posting the strongest returns.
Investor allocation activity saw an uptick in February as hedge funds recorded inflows of US$6.8 billion during the month. Distressed debt funds delivered the best performance among all strategic mandates, up 3.03% in February as their bets on distressed oil and gas producers paid off. India focused managers were down 0.51% during the month - their first month of negative returns after a 12 month winning streak………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Funds: What’s hot, what’s not

Posted on 12 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

February’s top-performing fund categories have turned sour in March as the market continues to weigh earnings, Europe and interest rates. Funds that use futures and options to goose returns in commodities soared 9.8% in February, but those funds change direction faster than a weather vane in a tornado.
From the end of February through March 9, leveraged commodity funds lost 8.3%, according to Morningstar, the Chicago fund trackers. Similarly, funds that leverage stock returns gained 9.4% in February, but have given back 3.3% in March………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds cut bullish commodity bets to 6-year low

Posted on 10 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Large scale speculators in gold futures added massively to short positions – bets that prices will fall – ahead of Friday’s jobs report in the US which sent gold prices tumbling. On Monday the gold price regained some of its footing, but is still trading at the lowest since November after retreating more than $140 an ounce from its 2015 high above $1,300 hit in January.
On the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, gold futures for April delivery – the most active contract – was last trading at $1,166.40 an ounce, up $2.10 or 0.2% from Friday’s close………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds cut bullish ag bets at fastest pace in 20 months

Posted on 10 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge fund optimism in agricultural commodity prices, as measured by positioning in derivatives, plunged at its fastest rate in 20 months, led by a surge in pessimism over values of wheat and sugar, in which bearish bets hit a record high.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, slashed by nearly 130,000 contracts its net long position in futures and options in the main 13 US-traded agricultural commodities in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) regulator………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Rated Funds 2015: Commodities

Posted on 06 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Commodities have been a disappointing asset class to invest in over the past three years but our four Rated Funds in this group are managed by respected specialists in their field. We have sought to provide “best in class” ideas for investors interested in agricultural commodities, energy, industrial commodities and precious metals.
Like other more specialised asset groups, such funds can provide good diversification and the potential for handsome gains in a portfolio that is already well-represented by traditional asset classes such as equities and bonds………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Specialty funds let you play with the pros in commodities sandbox

Posted on 05 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

As the Crimean crisis raged last summer, Tyler Mordy and his colleagues at Hahn Investment Stewards made a tactical call in the commodities market. Believing that Russia’s aggression would stoke a major political crisis, they invested in palladium, a silvery-white metal essential in the production of catalytic converters, fuel cells and countless types of electronics.
Russia is the largest source of palladium, and investors speculated about supply disruptions and dwindling stockpiles, sending prices skyward. “Palladium took off like a scalded cat. It worked out incredibly well for us last year,” recalls Mr. Mordy, who is director of research and co-chief investment officer at the Toronto-based firm………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Investing in Alternative Mutual Funds and ETFs

Posted on 03 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Alternative investments are gaining popularity, especially those offered in a liquid format by mutual fund and exchange-traded fund (ETF) providers. Mutual fund companies can’t develop new alternative products fast enough to offer to financial advisors or directly to individual investors.
In the past alternatives were offered primarily in investment products like hedge funds with requirements that investors be accredited, meaning they meet minimum income and net worth conditions. In the wake of the turbulence in the financial markets during the 2008-2009 financial crisis they are increasingly being packaged in more liquid and accessible formats………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds expect to top $3 trillion in 2015: Deutsche Bank

Posted on 03 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Despite producing an average return of 3.3 percent last year, the hedge fund industry is on track to surpass $3 trillion in assets this year, according to a new survey by Deutsche Bank.
“We have seen a doubling in assets under management since 2008,” said Barry Bausano, president of Deutsche Bank Securities and co-head of global prime finance for Deutsche Bank. “That’s despite what’s been pretty pedestrian performance.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Hedge funds resume bearish swing in ag bets

Posted on 03 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds, after a one-week break, resumed their bearish trend of positioning on agricultural commodities, with grains and sugar taking the brunt of the selling. Managed money, a proxy for speculators, cut by more than 30,000 contracts its net long position in futures and options in the main 13 US-traded agricultural commodities in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) regulator.
It was the seventh time in eight weeks that hedge funds have cut their net long position – the extent to which long bets, which profit when values rise, exceed short holdings, which benefit when values fall………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge Funds Flee Coffee at Fastest Pace in a Year: Commodities

Posted on 02 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

It’s raining in Brazil, and the coffee bulls are running for cover. Downpours in the past month mean moisture levels are adequate in most growing areas, replenishing soil left parched by a drought in 2014, according to MDA Weather Services. The rains in the top coffee producer and exporter spurred hedge funds to cut their bullish wagers by the most in a year.
Coffee swung from a bear market to a bull market and back again over the past year, making it the most volatile component of the Bloomberg Commodity Index. After 2014’s dry spell caused prices to double, futures retreated for a sixth consecutive month in February. Global stockpiles at the end of September will be 14 percent higher than previously estimated, the U.S. government said in its most recent outlook………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge Fund Returns Falter, Yet Money Continues to Flow In

Posted on 27 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Another year, and another mediocre performance by hedge funds, to put it kindly. The Barclay Hedge Fund Index gained a meager 2.89 percent in 2014, while the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index gained over 13 percent and the Barclays United States Aggregate Bond Index rose over 5 percent.
Even as their high fees have minted scores of new billionaires, hedge funds have now substantially underperformed a simple blend of index funds — 60 percent stocks and 40 percent bonds — for three-, five- and 10-year periods. And the 10-year numbers cover the period of the financial crisis and the sharp decline in stocks — the very calamity that hedge funds are supposed to protect against………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds raise bearish gold price bets by 44%

Posted on 25 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Large scale speculators in gold futures added massively to short positions – bets that prices will fall – ahead of Greek bailout deal. On Monday the gold price fell sharply at the open as markets continued to digest the implications of the Greek debt deal reached on Friday, but soon recovered to hover around $1,200 for most of the day.
In thin volumes on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, gold futures for April delivery – the most active contract – ended the day at $1,201.30 an ounce, down $3.60 or 0.3% from Friday’s close after earlier slumping to near its lowest for the year at $1,190.85………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold Fever Fading as $4 Billion Erased From Funds: Commodities

Posted on 24 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Judging by the barometer of hedge-fund interest, there’s less to get excited about in gold these days. Even as Greece battled with its creditors to avoid default and keep the euro zone intact, speculators retreated from the metal used as a haven from economic and political upheaval. Money managers cut their net-long wagers by the most in 15 weeks, U.S. government data show.
The strengthening dollar and record valuations for global equities are diminishing bullion’s appeal as a store of wealth. As the combined market capitalization of stocks thundered through $67 trillion last week and the dollar traded at its highest level in at least a decade, this month’s losses in exchange-traded products backed by gold reached almost $4 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold falls back out of favour as hedge funds retreat: Commodities

Posted on 17 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Gold is falling back out of favor with investors. Hedge funds cut their net-bullish position in New York futures and options by the most since November, U.S. government data show. A stronger dollar and gains for equities are cutting gold’s appeal as an alternative asset. Prices in New York fell for three straight weeks, snapping a surprise January gain that was the biggest monthly advance since 2012.
The global growth concerns that pushed gold higher last month are starting to subside as tension eases between Greece and its euro-area creditors. Europe’s economy picked up momentum at the end of last year, data showed Friday. The World Gold Council estimates demand for the metal reached a five-year low in 2014 as Chinese purchases slowed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Gold Falls Back Out of Favor as Hedge Funds Retreat: Commodities

Posted on 16 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Gold is falling back out of favor with investors. Hedge funds cut their net-bullish position in New York futures and options by the most since November, U.S. government data show. A stronger dollar and gains for equities are cutting gold’s appeal as an alternative asset. Prices in New York fell for three straight weeks, snapping a surprise January gain that was the biggest monthly advance since 2012.
The global growth concerns that pushed gold higher last month are starting to subside as tension eases between Greece and its euro-area creditors. Europe’s economy picked up momentum at the end of last year, data showed Friday. The World Gold Council estimates demand for the metal reached a five-year low in 2014 as Chinese purchases slowed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Fund Selector: Consistent outperformance

Posted on 13 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The performance of managers in the Investment Association UK All Companies sector relative to the FTSE 100 index since 1996 has borne a close relationship to the performance of the FTSE 250 index versus the FTSE 100.
Indeed, in all but three of the 19 years the sector only outperforms the FTSE 100 when the FTSE 250 does. Last year was one of the three years when this relationship failed – 1996 and 2005 were the others – with the sector returning 0.6 per cent, while the FTSE 100 and the FTSE 250 delivered 0.7 per cent and 3.7 per cent respectively………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Currency hedge funds are making huge comeback

Posted on 13 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds that bet on currencies are reaping the rewards for the beginning of 2015. According to the Wall Street Journal, currency hedge funds gained 3.4% in January, compared to a 0.5% gain in stock-trading hedge funds and a 0.9% decline in emerging market funds. Their performance this January is the best start to the year since 2008, and for some even longer.
This is a big renewal in currency trading at hedge funds, which diminished greatly after the 2008 financial crisis. But with activity in currencies picking up in the last year, currency trades and profits are finally starting to pick up………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Dallas-based Boardcage Capital launches strategy focused on basic materials, mining and metals, and hires COO

Posted on 12 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Boardage Capital Management, LLC, announced the launch of its strategy focused on basic materials, mining and metals. Dallas-based Boardage seeded the investment approach with internal capital in October 2013. As part of the firm’s growth, Boardage also announced the addition of Collin Schuhmacher to the team as Partner. Schuhmacher will be responsible for heading Boardage’s business development, operations and compliance as Chief Operating Officer.
Founder Kevin Nicholson employs a top-down approach to identifying opportunities and investment themes within the basic materials sector. Bottom-up fundamental research subsequently identifies equities most impacted by these themes………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Grain Bulls Exit at Fastest Pace Since 2013 on Glut: Commodities

Posted on 09 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds cut bullish wagers on agricultural commodities at the fastest pace since August 2013 as expanding grain supplies help keep a lid on global food inflation. Money managers lowered their net-long position on crops from corn to sugar for a fifth straight week, U.S. government data show. Investors got more bearish on wheat and have the smallest wager on a coffee rally in a year.
The U.S. government will probably increase its forecasts for global corn and wheat inventories in a report Tuesday, analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News said. World grain production in the season that began July 1 will rise to the biggest ever, the United Nations’ Food & Agriculture Organization said Feb. 5. The agency’s measure of food prices fell in January to the lowest level since 2010………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge Funds Most Bearish on Crude in 4 Years After Rally: Energy

Posted on 09 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds raised bearish bets on oil to the highest in more than four years, a sign they’re skeptical that a two-week 14 percent rally will last. Short bets on West Texas Intermediate climbed 1.2 percent in the week ended Feb. 3 to the most since August 2010, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show.
Net-long positions slipped for a third week, the longest stretch of declines since August. Prices jumped during the report week as a shrinking number of U.S. rigs drilling for crude raised speculation that output would soon retreat from a three-decade high………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge-fund bulls betting most on gold in 2 years

Posted on 03 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds are the most bullish on gold in more than two years, betting the metal’s allure will strengthen as slowing economies in Europe and Asia threaten U.S. expansion. Speculators increased their net-long position by 80 percent this year, U.S. government data show. The U.S. economy expanded at a slower-than-forecast pace in the fourth quarter and Federal Reserve officials acknowledged global risks at the end of their policy meeting last week.
Gold prices in January capped the biggest monthly gain in three years. Policy makers in Europe and Asia are adding to stimulus as they battle cooling growth, boosting the appeal of alternatives to currencies that are being revalued. Weaker foreign expansion has increased speculation among investors that the Fed will wait longer before raising U.S. interest rates………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge fund selling may be near ending in soy, but not wheat

Posted on 03 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge fund selling in agricultural commodities accelerated, to an extent that raised questions over the appetite for more short bets in soybeans – although in wheat, speculators’ liquidation may prove “self-fulfilling”.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, cut its net long position in futures and options in the top 13 US-traded agricultural commodities, from cotton to cattle, by nearly 90,000 contracts in the week to last Tuesday, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge-fund bulls betting most on gold in two years: commodities

Posted on 02 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds are the most bullish on gold in more than two years, betting the metal’s allure will strengthen as slowing economies in Europe and Asia threaten U.S. expansion. Speculators increased their net-long position by 80 percent this year, U.S. government data shows. The U.S. economy expanded at a slower-than-forecast pace in the fourth quarter and Federal Reserve officials acknowledged global risks at the end of their policy meeting last week.
Gold prices in January capped the biggest monthly gain in three years. Policy makers in Europe and Asia are adding to stimulus as they battle cooling growth, boosting the appeal of alternatives to currencies that are being revalued. Weaker foreign expansion has increased speculation among investors that the Fed will wait longer before raising U.S. interest rates………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds snap up gold, but where’s it heading?

Posted on 28 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds are snapping up gold, pushing their net long positions to levels not seen for almost two years. Meanwhile, analysts are split over what 2015 will hold for the precious metal. Speculative investors bought gold for a fourth successive week at a “strong pace” upping long positions. Silver has also been bought for close to 12 weeks, but positioning remains “far from stretched”, according to data from Bank of America Merrill Lynch.
The bank said its indicators suggest investors remain bullish for precious metals, a view which is supported by a number of investment banks and economists, but targets for where the metal will end up by year end differ dramatically………………………………………..Full Article: Source

3 Best Commodities Funds to Buy Now

Posted on 27 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Commodities come in several varieties. Therefore choosing the best commodities funds for your portfolio depends upon what you want them to do for you. From a portfolio management perspective, commodities funds are best used as diversification tools because they typically have a low correlation to a broad market index, such as the S&P 500 Index.
From a market timing perspective, commodities funds can be tricky, especially with regard to the biggest commodities story of the moment — the slide in oil prices — that has all the elements of the proverbial peril of “catching a falling knife.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Ex-Round Earth’s Whelahan Said to Start Commodities Fund

Posted on 27 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Carl Whelahan, a former partner at $200 million commodities hedge fund firm Round Earth Capital, is starting his own fund, according to a person familiar with his plans.
Whelahan expects to raise $100 million to $200 million for his New York-based Seleritas Investment Management, which is scheduled to start in the third quarter, according to the person, who asked not to be identified because the firm is private………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge Funds Bet Oil Has Further to Fall as Glut Grows: Energy

Posted on 26 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds boosted bearish wagers on oil to a four-year high as U.S. supplies grew the most since 2001. Money managers increased short positions in West Texas Intermediate crude to the highest level since September 2010 in the week ended Jan. 20, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show. Net-long positions slipped for the first time in three weeks.
U.S. crude supplies rose by 10.1 million barrels to 397.9 million in the week ended Jan. 16 and the country will pump the most oil since 1972 this year, the Energy Information Administration says………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China funds become new force in global commodity trade

Posted on 21 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China’s Shanghai Chaos investment fund is named after the pioneer of chaos theory Edward Norton Lorenz, who coined the term “butterfly effect” to describe seemingly random yet connected events. That may be an apt description for the global metals markets, where moves made by hedge funds in China are increasingly felt across the globe.
“Over 40 years ago US meteorologist Edward Lorenz definitely could not have known that his theories would change a Chinese person’s investment ideas, and allow him to make money,” Shanghai Chaos founder Ge Weidong said in a 2009 interview with Chinese media, explaining why he chose the name of his fund………………………………………..Full Article: Source

After harsh commodity fund shakeout, even the winners see tough times ahead

Posted on 20 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

After one of the worst years in memory for commodity funds, even the few managers who found a way to make money last year say they expect a difficult start to 2015.
Collapsing oil and grain prices caused havoc for commodity funds in 2014, with the average actively managed fund in the Lipper Global Commodity sector losing 14.35 percent. Big names abandoned the field altogether, and investors redeemed billions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Long/short funds top 2014 Lipper commodity league table

Posted on 19 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Below are tables of the best and worst performers in the fourth quarter of 2014 and for last year as a whole, among the actively managed commodity funds in the Lipper Global database.
The return performance is calculated in the fund’s local currency. The tables use the latest available data provided to Lipper and strip out enhanced index funds that use a very simple rules-based system of rebalancing, as well as funds that are wholly focused on natural resource equities………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Commodity funds see difficult 2015 on falling crude prices

Posted on 19 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

After one of the worst years in memory for commodity funds, even the few managers who found a way to make money last year say they expect a difficult start to 2015. Collapsing oil and grain prices caused havoc for commodity funds in 2014, with the average actively managed fund in the Lipper Global Commodity sector losing 14.35%. Big names abandoned the field altogether, and investors redeemed billions.
A handful of managers were nevertheless able to exploit the sudden mid-year surge in volatility and the fall in prices. But even they expect a difficult 2015 with pressure on prices to fall further. “It’s the worst place to be, but a long/short fund still has a lot of opportunities,” said Christian Gerlach, portfolio manager at Swiss & Global Asset Management, whose Julius Baer-branded commodity strategy was one of the few to perform well, up 6.09% in 2014………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Chinese funds aggressively shorting commodities linked to copper dive

Posted on 19 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Chinese hedge funds, once again linked to a powerful sell-off in copper this week, were probably replaying an aggressive short-selling strategy they have also used to target iron ore and coal, according to industry sources.
This indicates the growing clout of the secretive Chinese funds in global commodity markets as they tap their home-ground advantage in the world’s biggest consumer of copper and other commodities………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Estlander & Partners’ new fund focuses on commodities

Posted on 14 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Estlander & Partners has announced the launch of a new systematic fund focused exclusively on the commodities sector. The E&P Commodity fund began trading on 24th November 2014 with assets approaching $30m with backing from a large Nordic institution. The fund vehicle is only available for professional investors in specific jurisdictions within the approved regulatory framework. The strategy will also be made available as managed accounts to institutional and high net-worth investors.
The 100% systematic investment strategy is based on two years’ detailed research by the E&P team based in two of Finland’s leading university cities. The new strategy also benefits from the incorporation of the trend-based systematic approach to trading underlying E&P’s core investment strategies: Alpha Trend and Freedom………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge funds curtail bullish bets on grains, sugar into year-end

Posted on 07 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds reduced their bullish positions on grains and coffee, and raised bets on sugar price falls to the highest in 17 months - but ended 2014 far more upbeat on agricultural commodities than they began it.
Managed money, a proxy for speculators, reduced its net long in Chicago-traded soft red winter wheat futures and options in the week to last Tuesday for the first time in five weeks, data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulator shows………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hedge Funds Resume Bullish Gold Bets as Greece Vote Looms

Posted on 06 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hedge funds are stepping back onto the gold bandwagon as political turmoil in Greece and government actions in Asia helped send prices to their biggest monthly advance since June.
Bullish wagers on the metal increased for the first time in three weeks and have more than doubled since mid-November, U.S. government data show. Short holdings dropped for the sixth week in seven. Bullion rose for a second straight month in December………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Investors eye 2015 with big appetite for hedge funds

Posted on 02 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Wealthy investors are poised to put at least $90 billion into hedge funds next year, even after returns have largely been lackluster this year, research firm eVestment said on Tuesday. Fresh demand from pension funds, endowments, and insurers looking for alternatives to traditional stock and bond holdings will fuel next year’s flows, the researchers wrote in a report.
“Will institutional investors maintain their investments and continue to allocate more to hedge funds in 2015 … The short answer is yes,” they wrote, adding “We expect asset flows into hedge funds of at least between $90 billion and $110 billion in 2015.” Hedge funds manage roughly $3 trillion in assets………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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