Browsing: Indexes


Japan: Richardson makes a Tricky Case

Sep 9th, 2015 | Filed under: Currencies, Forex, Indexes, Institutional Investing

The Japanese economy deserves some credit for having pulled itself out of a recent recession, and it is "beginning to show signs of benefiting from a weaker yen" as a BlackRock strategist tells us. But (there is always a "but"). Read More

Foundations: They’ve Taken a Blow from “Subdued” Markets

Sep 2nd, 2015 | Filed under: Hedge Fund Industry Trends, Hedge Fund Strategies, Indexes, Institutional Investing, Liquid Alts, Performance, Analytics & Metrics, Risk management

Both private and community foundations depend heavily on U.S. equities. Indeed, domestic equities remained the bright spot while other strategies underperformed in 2014. A new report from a collaboration of the Council on Foundations and Commonfund provides food for thought about the reversal in foundation returns in that year. TheRead More

What Taper Tantrum?  And, Will Yellen Pull a Bernanke?

Aug 30th, 2015 | Filed under: Alpha Strategies, Hedge Fund Industry Trends, Indexes, Macroeconomics

The head of the New York Fed said on Wednesday, August 26th, that "the decision to begin the normalization process at the September FOMC meeting seems less compelling to me than it was a few weeks ago." We may be about to see another Fed retreat, analogous to that of a little more than two years ago. Read More

Headline Factors and Hedge Fund Success

Jun 23rd, 2015 | Filed under: Indexes, Macroeconomics, Performance, Analytics & Metrics

European mandated hedge funds, benefitting from improved expectations regarding that region, are up 5.54% year to date, says Eurekahedge. Wait: improved expectations? Yes, notwithstanding continued Greek drama. Read More

Vindication for Pirrong and Irwin: Why Are Trafigura’s Profits Up?

Jun 22nd, 2015 | Filed under: Commodities, Derivatives, Indexes, Media Coverage of Hedge Funds

Trafigura has done quite well from the decline in crude oil prices in recent months. So well, in fact, as to throw a harsh light on a story that appeared in The New York Times in December 2013. Read More

Mladina on Peeling the Onion: Looking for Idiosyncratic Skill

Jun 21st, 2015 | Filed under: Currencies, Emerging markets, Indexes, Performance, Analytics & Metrics

Factor models will evolve as researchers untangle what value is to be attributed to what factor. Model selection, then, has to remain flexible to keep pace with such research, and must of course remain useful for the investment decision makers. Read More

A New Index: The Eurekahedge 50

Jun 1st, 2015 | Filed under: Alternative Beta & Hedge Fund Replication, Indexes, Liquid Alts, Portable Alpha & Alpha/Beta Separation

It appears likely that the new index, the Eurekahedge 50, as well as the daily tracker index that has been built around it, will have aspirational significance. It is designed to set a bar that will be very difficult for other alpha seekers to clear, yet easy for replicators to follow. Read More

Study: Corporate/Government Cronyism Does Create Alpha

May 3rd, 2015 | Filed under: CAPM / Alpha Theory, Indexes

A new report finds that firms where current public officials are destined to become employees outperform other private firms by 7.43% per year during the three years before the officials/employees pass from one post to the other. The outperformance is highest in the year immediately before the switch, Justas a cynic looking for corrupt quid pro quos would suspect. Read More

Eurekahedge on Asia in March, and on Asia Over the Years

Apr 28th, 2015 | Filed under: Currencies, Emerging markets, Hedge Fund Strategies, Indexes, Performance, Analytics & Metrics

According to Eurekahedge the hedge fund industry globally returned $54.1 billion in performance gains in the first quarter 2015. This is the greatest first-quarter gain since before the global financial crisis. Read More

Griffin, Bernanke, and the Saud family

Apr 27th, 2015 | Filed under: Alpha Hunters, Alpha Strategies, Currencies, Indexes, Macroeconomics

Why has Ken Griffin, the founder of Citadel, hired former Fed Chair Ben Bernanke as a Senior Advisor? This decision represents a surprise given Griffin's views on "quantitative easing," views he forcefully expressed a couple of years ago. Read More

Authorities Offer Revisionism About Flash Crash

Apr 22nd, 2015 | Filed under: Algorithmic and high-frequency trading, Derivatives, Indexes

Authorities now claim that the shenanigans that set off the flash crash of May 2010 were the work of Navinder Singh Sarao. Does this mean Waddell & Reed were unjustly maligned? Almost certainly. Read More

They Do It Right Down Under: Australian Institutional Funds

Apr 14th, 2015 | Filed under: Alpha Hunters, Alpha Seekers, Alpha Strategies, CAPM / Alpha Theory, ETFs, Indexes, Institutional Investing

The hapless U.S. mutual funds Chen and Gallagher sample have a nominally positive pre fee alpha only when measured against CAPM. That disappears into the negatives when the baseline used is the Fama-French model, and deeper into the negatives when the momentum factor is added. Read More

Why Constraints on Hedge Funds Matter

Mar 8th, 2015 | Filed under: Alpha Strategies, Alternative Mutual Funds, Hedge Fund Industry Trends, Hedge Fund Strategies, Indexes, Performance, Analytics & Metrics

Andrew Beer looks at what happens when talented hedge fund managers try and perform within the constraints of the mutual fund structure. Read More

Focus on U.S. Real Estate Benchmarks: NCREIF Transaction Based Index

Feb 20th, 2015 | Filed under: Alpha Hunters, Alpha Strategies, Indexes, Real Estate

By Brad Case, PhD, CFA, CAIA This is the third in a series of articles focusing on the strengths of different indices that are published regularly and may be appropriate for benchmarking, risk assessment, and other real estate investment purposes. The first article focused on two similar index families, the Moody’s/RCARead More

Eurekahedge Airs Wide Range of Views on Indian Hedge Funds

Feb 16th, 2015 | Filed under: Alpha Seekers, Alpha Strategies, Emerging markets, Indexes

A new report from Eurekahedge tries to go beyond some obvious observations about the performance of hedge funds there in 2014, or about the performance of that country's broad economy last year. Eurekahedge talked to seven experts in the field. They took quite different views on the most basic of questions. So different that a contrarian would have a tough time finding the consensus to counter. Read More

The Danger of Indices

Feb 1st, 2015 | Filed under: Indexes, Performance, Analytics & Metrics

A useful benchmark or a dangerous prop? Guest columnist Andrew Beer looks at the hidden dangers in indices.Read More

Low Energy Prices: Crude and Refined Consequences

Jan 21st, 2015 | Filed under: Currencies, Hedge Fund Industry Trends, Hedge Fund Strategies, Indexes

Eurekahedge tells us that hedge funds were in the black 4.57% in 2014. That's hardly cause for celebration, since the MSCI World Index returned 6.79% over the same year. But all eyes now turn to the still-sliding price of oil. Read More

Low-Vol Anomaly Provokes Reflections on an Old Adage

Jan 11th, 2015 | Filed under: CAPM / Alpha Theory, Indexes, Risk management

A new paper by Eric Falkenstein discusses an old question: the reason for the high risk-adjusted return in low-risk equities, and the adjustments it requires in CAPM. This is no fleeting oddity, but a lasting characteristic of markets. In econo-speak, not only the existence but the persistence of the anomaly requires explanation.Read More

New Greek Political Crisis Looks Like the Old Greek Crises

Jan 7th, 2015 | Filed under: Alpha Strategies, Currencies, Indexes

The newly called snap elections in Greece will serve as a contest between pro-austerity and anti-austerity forces. Anti-austerity means abandoning the bail-out deal, and that position now seems the likely victor. Read More

Focus on U.S. Real Estate Benchmarks: NCREIF Property Index

Jan 4th, 2015 | Filed under: Alpha Hunters, Alpha Strategies, Indexes, Real Estate

Brad Case, Ph.D., CFA, CAIA, guest columnist, continues his series on U.S. real estate benchmarks as he looks at the NCREIF Property Index.Read More

The Top 0.004%: The Wealth-X Report

Nov 24th, 2014 | Filed under: High-net-worth investors, Indexes

A report focuses on the life and spending habits of the 211,275 wealthiest individuals on the planet, and their network of family and friends. Read More

Hedge Funds: Good Run for India, but Troubles in Brazil

Oct 21st, 2014 | Filed under: Emerging markets, Indexes, Performance, Analytics & Metrics

India accounts for much of the positive showing of Asia ex-Japan in the hedge fund world YTD. That positive showing, in turn, may be attracting asset flow. Read More

The Bubble This Time: Oil & Gas Energy Stocks?

Oct 15th, 2014 | Filed under: Commodities, Energy, Indexes

If we look for the recent peak in Dow Jones U.S. oil & gas stocks we’ll look to the start of the summer. In June of this year the energy sector got above $850. The fall from that height puts the size of our correction in the neighborhood of 16%. It is possible these stocks are leading the rest of the market down. Read More

GFIA: June is ‘Listless’ for Many Asia Managers

Aug 10th, 2014 | Filed under: Alpha Strategies, Hedge Fund Strategies, Indexes

For many fund managers working in Southeast Asia, and/or China, June 2014 was “listless,” with numbers that suggest a flat tire. The booms on the ASEAN bourses are concentrated where the fund managers aren’t, in “high beta cyclical sectors.” Read More

Traders Sometimes Want Macro-News to Be Free

Jul 9th, 2014 | Filed under: ETFs, Indexes

There exists “robust evidence of informed trading during lockup periods ahead of the Federal Open Market Committee … monetary policy announcements” say three authors. Some agencies can embargo news effectively. The FOMC doesn't seem to be among them. Read More

May Numbers: Long Equity Beats Event-Driven Peers in Asia

Jul 8th, 2014 | Filed under: Alpha Strategies, Emerging markets, Indexes

GFIA says that most of the Asia Pacific managers it tracks generated substantial returns above the relevant index in May 2014. The long-biased firms did best there, their event-driven peers … not so much. Read More

Index Provider Transparency: End Users Unimpressed

May 19th, 2014 | Filed under: Indexes

Europe's index providers, by their own account, already have strong incentives to offer optimal transparency and, in their self-interest, they do so. A survey and report from EDHEC examines this claim. Read More

Chopping Hedge Fund Data and Joining a Choir

May 13th, 2014 | Filed under: Alpha Strategies, Currencies, Indexes

The latest news from Eurekahedge shows a spotty performance for the global hedge fund industry in April, and generally in the year to date. The report also makes a casual remark about low inflation numbers that gives our Christopher Faille an opportunity to grouse about its Keynesian premises.Read More

Axioma on those Low-Vol Picnic Baskets

Jul 25th, 2013 | Filed under: Alpha Strategies, CAPM / Alpha Theory, Indexes

The success of low-volatility strategies has been noted in the literature at least since the mid-1970s, with the publication of a seminal work by Haugen and Heins. And such strategies continue to prove successful today. Why do they still work? Why don't the excess profits draw in the bears, consuming all the picnic baskets, driving profit levels down to normal? Read More

Of Falling Risks and Indexes

May 1st, 2012 | Filed under: Commodities, Indexes, Risk management

Any quantitative strategy is susceptible to being reduced to an index, and along with this, to transparency and routine. Once this happens, that "alpha" becomes "beta," and the 2 + 20 fees are no longer available. A manager in search of alpha will have to move beyond that strategy, peeling away that layer of the onion and going to a deeper, not-yet-indexable, strategy. Read More

ESMA and EDHEC on Indexes and Tracking Errors

Feb 1st, 2012 | Filed under: Alpha Strategies, ETFs, Indexes

Since transaction costs and the illiquidity of certain portions of an index make ideal tracking impossible, there will be a difference between the return of a tracking ETF, such as those tracking ETFs that are structured as UCITS in Europe, and the return of the underlying index or benchmark. The European Securities and Markets Authority maintains that investors should be informed of the factors that are likely to affect the size and the volatility of this difference. Read More