Opalesque Industry Update: Hedge funds gained 1.12% in March, according to the Barclay Hedge Fund Index compiled by BarclayHedge. The Index is up 3.96% year to date, and has enjoyed ten straight months of gains.|
“The mid-month announcement of a flawed Cyprus bailout plan unsettled global markets and sentiment shifted back to risk-off,” says Sol Waksman, founder and president of BarclayHedge.
“Interest rates moved lower and equity markets were muted with the notable exceptions of the US and Japan. The Nikkei Index gained 7.25 percent as the BOJ aggressively moved to reflate Japan’s economy and stressed its commitment to target a 2 percent inflation rate."
Overall, 15 of Barclay’s 18 hedge fund strategies were up in March. The Barclay Healthcare & Biotechnology Index gained 2.95%, Pacific Rim Equities added 2.77%, Distressed Securities was up 2.12%, and Equity Long Bias gained 1.99%.
“Although credit spreads widened in March, demand for US high yield combined with diminished supply resulted in spread compression for the HY sector,” says Waksman.
The Barclay Fund of Funds Index gained 0.90% in March, and is up 3.29% after three months.
The Equity Short Bias Index lost 3.20% in March, Emerging Markets was down 0.52%, and the Technology Index lost 0.31%. Equity Short Bias has dropped 9.38% in first three months of 2012.