Hedge Funds Increase Cash, Reduce Leverage In Tough Times

Jul 8 2008 | 10:31am ET

Hedge fund managers around the world responded to last year's difficult market conditions by lowering their leverage and moving a significant share of their assets into cash.

According to a new study by Greenwich Associates and Global Custodian, the proportion of hedge fund managers earning double-digit investment returns dropped dramatically from 2006 to 2007, with the biggest falloff occurring among funds focused on fixed income. With industry-wide performance on the decline, the hedge funds participating in this year's study reported holding fully 15% of their assets in cash at the beginning of 2008.

Cash levels were slightly higher among hedge funds in Asia (17%) and Europe (16%). Equity-oriented funds had 14% of their assets in cash, and fixed income-focused funds had 17%. Among the world's biggest hedge funds, nearly 12% of assets were invested in cash.

Meanwhile, hedge fund industry leverage ratios declined to about 2.1 at the end of 2007 from 2.3 a year earlier, according to the study. Overall gross leverage ratios for fixed income-oriented funds declined to an average of approximately 3.0 at the end of 2007 from 3.4 last year.


In Depth

U.S. Treasury Moves on Reinsurance Loophole

Apr 24 2015 | 5:11pm ET

The U.S. Treasury Department has released proposed rules aimed at limiting the ability...

Lifestyle

Puerto Rico Woos The Rich But So Far Gains Little

Apr 17 2015 | 2:45am ET

Hedge fund manager Rob Rill grins. He has just had word that U.S. financial regulators...

Guest Contributor

Opportunities Ahead: Asian Fixed Income and Currency Markets

Apr 24 2015 | 6:18am ET

For hedge funds focusing on Asia, the policy uncertainty, unclear interest rate...

 

Editor's Note