Asian Funds Increase Use of Multiple Prime Brokers, Survey Says

Bloomberg- Asian hedge funds are increasing their use of multiple prime brokers after the U.S. subprime mortgage market collapse heightened the risk of relying on a single investment bank for brokerage services, an AsiaHedge survey found.

Hedge funds that are managed in Asia or invest primarily in the region awarded 326 shared mandates to prime brokers, 36 percent more than last year, according to Bloomberg calculations based on information in AsiaHedge’s 2007 and 2008 Asian prime brokerage surveys. The pace of growth exceeded the less than 20 percent increase in sole mandates to 778 in the past year.

Rising delinquencies in the subprime market that led to the near collapse of Bear Stearns Cos., once among the top three Wall Street prime brokers, have forced the world’s largest banks and securities firms to post more than $400 billion of asset writedowns and credit losses since the beginning of last year.

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