U.S., U.K. Still The Only Major Hedge Fund Centers

May 26 2010 | 9:59am ET

It remains unclear whether new hedge fund regulations in the European Union or the U.S. will make good on predictions of a hedge fund exodus from either jurisdiction, now that both are inching their ways toward reality. But fears of those regulations produced barely a blip, according to Hedge Fund Research.

The U.S. is still home to more than seven out of 10 single-manager hedge funds, with 70.11% of funds based in the country last year. That’s down from 2008, but barely: It had been 70.48%. By assets it’s an even more overwhelming lead, at 78.84%, down from 79.63%.

Britain saw a somewhat steeper drop—Europe’s largest hedge fund manager seems likely to be the hardest-hit by the EU rules and has already seen some high-profile managers move to Switzerland or the Channel Islands. But the country’s hedge fund industry has not exactly been obliterated, as it now accounts for 12.36% of funds (down from 13.3%) and 12.19% of assets (down from 12.62%).

By comparison, all other jurisdictions are pygmies. China was a very, very distant third with 2.69% of hedge funds, followed by Switzerland at 1.83%. Canada was fifth with 1.75%.

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