Term of Focus - Lamp Letter

Lamp letter

A May 6, 1997, "no-action letter" from the SEC to Lamp Technologies of Dallas indicating that an online hedge-fund database would not violate restrictions against marketing hedge funds. The landmark letter cleared the way for others to launch hedge-fund performance databases on the Internet, and expressed the SEC's opinion that such databases did not represent the type of general hedge-fund advertising that was prohibited under rule 502(c) of Regulation D under the Securities Act of 1933


Hedge Fund Glossary

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Lamp letter

A May 6, 1997, "no-action letter" from the SEC to Lamp Technologies of Dallas indicating that an online hedge-fund database would not violate restrictions against marketing hedge funds. The landmark letter cleared the way for others to launch hedge-fund performance databases on the Internet, and expressed the SEC's opinion that such databases did not represent the type of general hedge-fund advertising that was prohibited under rule 502(c) of Regulation D under the Securities Act of 1933

Leverage

The borrowed money that an investor employs to increase buying power and increase its exposure to an investment. Users of leverage seek to increase their overall invested amounts in hopes that the returns on their positions will exceed their borrowing costs. The extent of a fund's leverage is stated either as a debt-to-equity ratio or as a percentage of the fund's total assets that are funded by debt. Example: If a fund has $1 million of equity capital and it borrows another $2 million to bring its total assets to $3 million, its leverage can be stated as "two times equity" or as 67% ($2 million divided by $3 million). Ratios of between two and five to one are common. Leverage can also come in the form of short sales, which involve borrowed securities

Limited partnership

Many hedge funds are structured as limited partnerships, which are business organizations managed by one or more general partners who are liable for the fund's debts and obligations. The investors in such a structure are limited partners who do not participate in day-to-day operations and are liable only to the extent of their investments.

Lock-up

The period of time -- often one year -- during which hedge-fund investors are initially prohibited from redeeming their shares.

Long-biased investment strategy

An approach taken by fund managers who tend to hold considerably more long positions than short positions.

Long/short investment strategy

An approach in which fund managers buy stocks whose prices they expect will increase and takes short positions in securities (usually in the same sector) whose prices they believes will decline. The strategy, also known as the Jones Model, is designed to generate profits during bullish periods in the overall stock market, while serving as a source of capital protection in a falling stock market.