Funds Hub

Money managers under the microscope

from Reuters Investigates:

Financial cyber-bullying?

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"They love a conspiracy theory on the boards," David Jones, chief market strategist at spread betting firm IG Index told UK correspondents Rosalba O'Brien and Matt Scuffham when they were reporting for "The stock, the web, the CEO and his lawyers" . It's a look at some of the shenanigans around highly speculative resource stocks when they are discussed on message boards like  ADVFN and iii. Late-night gossip and personal insults are par for the course: some suspect organised short-sellers may be behind the talk. Given the high volumes of online trading in the UK, we wonder how long it will be before regulator FSA is forced to take a closer look.

Day-trader John Douce is sceptical about the boards' impact on stock prices

Day-trader John Douce is sceptical about the boards' impact on stock prices

Hedge funds found not guilty

Interesting research from the FSA out today, giving us the reassuring conclusion that hedge funds don’t seem to pose a systemic risk to the global financial system.

The two surveys, from October, show that funds were running a “relatively low level” of leverage relative to the assets investors have put into the funds and that risks were largely contained.

All very British

The debate over the EU hedge fund directive at this week’s Edhec-Risk conference in London was in danger of becoming all a bit too friendly before one delegate’s intervention.

“Isn’t it the case that you’re all being terribly polite?” she asked, drawing widespread applause from the hedge fund industry audience with the suggestion that most of the panel secretly believed the controversial regulation may be driven a rather sinister rivalry between EU member countries.

Shadowlands

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Executives in London’s Mayfair, home of the UK’s multi-billion dollar hedge fund community, could be forgiven for a few raised eyebrows after British Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s call yesterday to outlaw shadow banking systems and offshore tax havens.

rtr34f8“You are also restructuring your banks. So are we.” he told U.S. Congress. ”But how much safer would everybody’s savings be if the whole world came together to outlaw shadown banking systems and offshore tax havens.”

Insurance policy

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Shorting UK banks, it seems, is so last year.

Having profited from the implosion of the sector in 2008, many funds believe prices have fallen far enough, and in some cases are actually looking good value.

rtrp8722Outspoken star fund manager Crispin Odey this week revealed he’s now buying UK banks, having made money shorting them last year.

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