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Indian hedgies outperform Asia, August another challenging month

Latest figures by leading US research firm, Hedge Fund Research, show that August was yet another tough month for hedge funds globally. Moderate gains of 0.38 per cent (1.65 per cent YTD) were made as fund managers entered the month cautiously; many of the heavyweights, though, got burned again by the markets. HFR’s Asia ex-Japan Index showed a slight +0.13 per cent gain but this still leaves the region -0.50 per cent YTD. However, there has been one stellar performer this year: India. Economic growth continues apace and seems to be having a knock-on effect on India’s fund managers. Tentative figures for August from Eurekahedge show a +0.47 per cent gain, putting the region’s fast-developing hedge fund industry at +5.50 per cent YTD. According to figures just released by US-based Russell Investments, its Russell India Index has hit 10 per cent YTD as of 7th September, clearly outperforming the rest of Asia (4.4 per cent). Figures show that the sub-continent delivered a 4.6 per cent return in 1Q10, and a moderate -0.4 per cent loss in 2Q10 (against a whopping -8.5 per cent loss on the Russell Asia Pacific Index). So far in 3Q10, the biggest gains have come from the Financial Services sector: 13.3 per cent. With such healthy figures, India’s hedge funds are likely to continue outperforming the rest of Asia over the near-term.

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