Hedge funds posted positive returns in April continuing their consecutive sixth month streak. The Eurekahedge Hedge Fund Index was up 0.87% during the month as most markets trended upwards. The MSCI World Index gained 2.02% in April.
Highlights from this month’s report include:
· Hedge funds gained US$100 billion in four months, assets at highest level since 2008
· Assets in North American hedge funds reached historically highest level of US$1.27 trillion
· Japanese hedge funds witnessed strongest April and 4-months on record returns, gaining 6.63% and 18.55% respectively
· The Eurekahedge Billion Dollar Hedge Fund Index is up 4.37% April year-to-date with total assets standing at US$253 billion
· Eurekahedge is currently tracking more than 330 funds that have delivered returns over 15% year-to-date
· Distressed debt funds extended their winning streak to 10 months, gaining 19% since July 2012
· The asset-weighted Mizuho-Eurekahedge Asia Pacific Index was up 6.79% in April year-to-date
The start of the month witnessed some profit taking from the equity markets amid some disappointing global economic data. The S&P 500 dipped below the 1550 mark by mid-month amid news of less-than-expected Chinese growth hit global markets. The markets brushed off the initial disappointment amid the earnings season, some positive economic data from the US and the installation of an Italian government in Europe. Commodity markets remained volatile during the month with most indices finishing April in the red as energy prices fell amid growing inventories in the US, while gold prices witnessed the largest daily price decline in 30 years amid rumours that other European banks might follow the Cyprus example and liquidate their gold reserves.
Total assets under management (AUM) increased by nearly US$20 billion during April, bringing the size of the industry to US$1.87 trillion, the highest level since the financial crisis. Most of the increase in assets was registered through performance as the managers gained US$12.7 billion. The sector also witnessed strong asset flows of US$7.1 billion.