HSBC Halbis Partners is launching its first commodities fund, the HSBC Commodities Alpha Fund, on August 1 2006 with seed capital of $50 million from HSBC. The fund will be managed by Per Tingberg who was hired earlier in June specifically to head the firmÆs new initiative in commodities. Tingberg has over a decade of investment experience most recently as part of a team managing a commodity long/short fund at MPC Investors. Tingberg began his investment career at Barclays Global Investors 15 years ago with a focus on commodity investing at the firm since 1998 and held the position of head of commodities for Barclays Global Investors.

The fund aims to generate absolute returns independently of commodity market directions and with low volatility and will be run on a discretionary fundamental, multi-sector basis investing in all sub-sectors of the commodity markets. Bill Maldonado, head of alternative investments at HSBC Halbis Partners, says: ôGiven our footprint in emerging markets, we see every day the opportunities in commodities. Our objective was to find a talented manager with experience across the spectrum of commodities and the ability to extract alpha from this volatile asset class in a risk-adjusted manner. Per brings that expertise to our line up and we are very excited about the imminent launch of the fund.ö

HSBC Halbis Partners was announced in 2005 as part of an HSBC strategy for sustainable growth in its investment business. While commenting on it then, CEO Dean Buckley said: ôThe new HSBC Halbis Partners will include most of our æactiveÆ investment management teams together with the hedge fund teams from HSBC Alternative Investments. This new business will focus only on areas where we believe we can create long-term, sustainable outperformance, for example in UK and European equities, in Asian equities and in emerging markets.ö

As of end April, 2006 HSBC Halbis Partners managed assets of more than $91 billion.