Money managers under the microscope
There seems to be an endless wave of bad news hitting the hedge fund industry at the moment — gates and suspensions, record poor performance, the Bernard Madoff scandal and so forth – but there are still one or two reasons to be positive.
According to a survey of institutional investors by alternative assets data group Preqin, conducted in January (and therefore after the alleged Madoff fraud came to light), only 8 percent said they were no longer confident about hedge funds and would reduce investments.
By contrast, 26 percent said they would be increasing their allocations this year.
This appears to be a more positive picture than for high net worth individuals, who, according to some anecdotal evidence, have become more cautious on hedge funds.
Hedge funds’ awful performance figures have been splashed all over the media for some time, but the effect this is having on the funds themselves could potentially be of deeper concern to investors.
According to a report by Moody’s, entitled “Market turmoil increases stress on hedge fund operations”, there are a multitude of potential dangers to watch out for as fund performance deteriorates and cost pressures grow.
We perhaps know already that 2008 was the worst year ever for FoHFs, and that cumulative losses reached an all-time high as the year ended with a Madoff-shaped bang. Fitch also raises a fear that managers have shared after imposing redemption restrictions on clients wanting to stash their cash under the proverbial mattress: