With just a few short weeks until the end of the year, look for many fund managers to take on more risk in an effort to salvage their annual return figures.
This is not about fundamentals, this is about something far more important: career risk.
Hedge Fund Research’s Global Hedge Fund index, which is broadly representative of the industry, is up just 11.9 percent year to date, while its Equity Hedge index is scarcely doing better, up 12.6 percent. The HFR Macro Fund index is actually down 8 percent, indicating the best paid minds in the business did not see the astounding emerging markets rally and dollar fall coming.
Given that global emerging markets are up something on the order of 60 percent this year, that all global shares are up 30 percent and even the S&P 500 is up 22 percent, we can conclude that a lot of managers are heading into the year-end reporting season with a lot of ground to make up.
There are also lifeboats full of institutional fund managers and mutual fund managers in the same position.