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Australia Hedge Fund Roundtable Highlight Super Funds, Mezzanine, Retail

New York (HedgeCo.net) – Opalesque launched the 28th issue in a series of regional roundtable forums, the “Opalesque 2010 Australia Roundtable”. With Matthias Knab, founder of Opalesque and internationally recognized expert on hedge funds and alternatives, moderating, the Opalesque Roundtable discussed the growth of the Aussie pension fund industry.

Leading Australian hedge funds discussed what opportunities they see for their funds and strategies going forward. Superannuation Funds explained how they select their hedge funds, and what at the moment excites seeders who work exclusively with Australian funds.

With A$1.2 trillion (US$1,1 trillion), it is now the world’s fifth largest investment industry. 9% of every person’s salary in Australia getting invested into a registered superannuation (pension) fund, the country has created one of the fastest growing asset pools worldwide.

Australia has very mature wholesale and retail markets, which both offer unique opportunities for local and global hedge funds, the paper informs.

However, “Be aware of the rules and set-up of those markets.” Opalesque warned “Beyond wholesale and retail, the Roundtable also explains how to access a third rapidly growing asset pool, the so-called mezzanine market which is managed by the local dealer groups.”

One of the most stunning aspects of the Australian pension fund industry has been the ascent of the Self-Managed Super Funds, where the individual is managing his pension assets himself as a self-directed investor. At the smaller end, a Self-Managed Super Funds may have only $250,000 in assets, through to many millions at the high end. Within just five years, over one third of all superannuation assets have been moved into the 400,000 self-managed super funds.

The domestic Australian hedge fund industry has traditionally been a strong performer and was also able to protect the downside in the crisis of 2008, where the average Australian hedge fund lost 17.74% against the ASX which fell over 40%, the report explains.

At the same time, the global industry fell somewhere between 17% and 21%. In addition, 25% of the 200 plus managers in the Australian Fund Monitors database produced positive returns, and over 90% of them outperformed the ASX200.

The following experts participated:

Bruce Tomlinson, Portfolio Manager, Sunsuper Superannuation Fund
Adrian Redlich, Chief Investment Officer, Merricks Capital
Chris Gosselin, Founder, Australian Fund Monitors
Dominic McCormick, Chief Investment Officer, Select Asset Management
John Corr, Founder, Fortitude Capital
Larry Simon, Co-Founder, Lazorne Group
Nelson Lam, Head of Investments, Ascalon Capital Managers

The 2010 Opalesque Australia Roundtable was sponsored by Australian Fund Monitors and the Opalesque 2010 Roundtable Series sponsors Custom House Group and Taussig Capital.

Alex Akesson
Editor for HedgeCo.net
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