The Dutch pension asset manager's Asia Pacific head of real estate says his team has just had one of its busiest years ever and that 2021 is looking similarly promising.
The MSCI Emerging Markets Index returned 14.5% in the third quarter of 2007. At the other end of the spectrum, the Nikkei 225 lost -7.1%. Overall, says Pimco, volatility rose across risky assets, while bond volatility declined.
It is not yet clear how alternative assets have weathered the summer storm. The Cambridge Associates US private-equity and venture-capital indices are up 8.1% and 6.7% respectively, and the Dow Jones AIG Commodities Index gained 6.2%. But these numbers lag by three months so this is actually spring data û how these strategies fared in the credit crunch has yet to be seen.
Hedge fund numbers are up to date and have been mediocre, with the CSFB/Tremont Hedge Fund Index treading water at 1.1% for the quarter. Not all hedge funds are the same, of course. Amidst credit turmoil, the best performers were û no surprises here û emerging-market strategies (up 4.9%) and global macro (up 4.4%).
Otherwise though itÆs uninspiring stuff. Recent heroes in event-driven and distressed spaces have barely performed, while convertible arbitrage and fixed-income arb strategies lost money. The worst hit was managed futures, down -4.5%, a corker given it had been the strongest performer among hedge fund categories in the second quarter. A true case of æfrom hero to zeroÆ.
Moreover, while some hedge fund strategies kept their heads above water, they were beaten by both long-only equities and by bonds. Bonds in particular have done well, at least if you are a US-dollar based investor. JPMorganÆs non-US dollar hedged index returned 5.4% and the Lehman US TIPS Index returned 4.5%. Contrast the strong performance of boring old inflation-linked bonds to that of the Merrill Lynch High Yield Index, which gained a mere 0.3%. Clearly the gains have been in quality fixed income.
Nor is it just about ælinkersÆ and non-US markets: even US bonds managed 2.8% (according to the Lehman Aggregate), beating most hedge-fund strategies, as well as the S&P500 (up only 2%).
Both value and small caps have enjoyed good runs for years and, contrary to expectations, had a strong start in 2007, but the credit crunch served a dose of reality.
The Russell 1000 Growth Index gained 4.2% but its midcap value index lost -3.5% and its big-cap value index lost -0.2%; its small-cap growth fund returned precisely zero in the third quarter. And combining the worst of trends, RussellÆs small-cap value index dropped by -6.3%.
US large-cap and growth stocks outperformed other developed markets, with British, German and Japanese indices in negative territory, and the MSCI East Asia Far East Index (ie developed Asia Pacific) returning a lacklustre 2.2%.
Malaysia's Armed Forces Fund hires new CEO; Canada's Omers appoints Asia capital markets managing director; HSBC Asset Management creates alternatives unit, appoints CIO as its head; Bank of Singapore names global wealth head; Aware Super hires IFA head; Hong Kong names acting head for MPFA; Schroders adding to Asia ESG headcount; and more.
The French fund house becomes the world’s largest responsible asset manager to help asset owners implement sustainable investing, underlining its serious commitment to ESG.
The long-waited infrastructure Reits have finally arrived in China and, while experts see a slow start with hurdles ahead, they say it will later move to a 'big bang'.
AsianInvestor reveals the second half of the standout funds in our latest awards, including equity funds, the top Reit and the best smart beta vehicle.