Eureka: Risk-Shy Hedge Funds Fall, Largest Funds Do Well In Nov.

Dec 12 2011 | 12:53pm ET

Skittish hedge funds returned to their losing ways last month, shedding 0.65% as they sought to steer clear of the Eurozone debt crisis.

The Eurekahedge Hedge Fund Index is down 3.61% with just one month left in the calendar year. But the picture is brighter for the largest hedge funds in the developed world. The largest 100 hedge funds in the world shed only 0.08% on the month and the largest 300 only 0.5%, the latter in line with the Standard & Poor's 500 Index's loss for November. Both the Mizuho-Eurekahedge TOP indices remain up for the year, with the TOP100 Index up 2.66% and the TOP300 up 0.94%.

Regionally, losses were concentrated outside of hedge funds' North American and European heartlands. Funds based in the former rose 0.06% on the month (down 1.15% year-to-date) and those in the latter lost 0.48% (down 5.22% YTD), while Asia ex-Japan funds dropped 3.52% (down 11.31% YTD) and those in Eastern Europe and Russia lost 2% (down 13.54% YTD).

Strategy-wise, commodity trading advisers and managed futures funds were the best place to be in November, adding an estimated 0.71% (down 2.93% YTD). Macro funds and relative value funds also posted gains, rising 0.17% (down 0.92% YTD) and 0.15% (down 0.29% YTD), respectively. Only one strategy is in the black for the year: Fixed income, at 1.02% after losing 0.61% last month.

Long/short equity, distressed debt and event-driven hedge funds suffered the biggest November losses, dropping 1.77% (down 6.63% YTD), 1.75% (down 4.49% YTD) and 1.35% (down 4.91% YTD), respectively.

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