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Alternative Market Briefing

MENA hedge funds lead emerging markets in performance on US dollar gains

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Komfie Manalo, Opalesque Asia:

Funds investing in Russia/Eastern Europe and the Middle East/MENA regions have extended early 2018 gains to lead EM hedge fund performance through April. The HFRI EM:MENA Index leads EM hedge fund performance with a 9.0% return YTD; MENA focused hedge funds manage approximately $5.9 billion across nearly 50 funds.

The HFRI EM:Russia/Eastern Europe Index remains up 1.3% YTD, despite three consecutive monthly declines that have pared the 6.2% return in January. Russian equity markets fell sharply in April, losing -7.6% and bringing the YTD return to a narrow decline of -0.04%. Total capital of hedge funds investing in Russia/ Eastern Europe increased to $33.1 billion across more than 170 funds in 1Q18.

The HFRI Emerging Markets (Total) Index posted a narrow gain of 0.08% in the first four months of the year as the US Dollar strengthened and the US Federal Reserve continued increasing interest rates.

Data provider Hedge Fund Research said the YTD gains of emerging markets hedge funds pare the 4.0% gains reported in January and following the gain of 19.4% for all of 2017.

The HFRI Fund Weighted Composite Index, which includes hedge funds globally of all strategies and regional investment focus areas, has gained 0.4% YTD through April.

Kenneth J. Heinz, president of HFR, commented, "Four po......................

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