James Williams, Hedgeweek

ALFI publishes liquidity guidelines… Morgan Stanley and Equinox partner with Longchamp… Brown Advisory sees assets top USD1 billion…

The Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry (ALFI) has this week published a comprehensive 46-page report on Liquidity Guidelines. The aim of the report is to try to provide guidance on what exactly liquidity risk means for UCITS and how it could be managed in a reasonable manner, reported Institutional Asset Manager. The topic of liquidity has been a key concern in the current process of global regulatory reform, due to the liquidity shortfalls that became apparent during the financial crisis. The guidelines describe the challenges in capturing and managing liquidity risk in an appropriate manner and provides some insights into current trends. The full report can be downloaded by going to www.alfi.lu

Morgan Stanley and Equinox Fund Management LLC (“Equinox”), a US-based multi-manager, this week announced their partnership with Longchamp Asset Management
, (“Longchamp”) a French asset management company.

This latest partnership follows the successful launch of four CTAs on Morgan Stanley’s FundLogic Alternatives Platform in recent months. The four funds offer investors exposure to complementary strategies being run by Winton Capital Management, Quantitative Investment Management, Mesirow Financial and Quest Partners. 

Morgan Stanley is to provide expertise in prime brokerage and act as the fund's futures clearing merchant as well as support the fund infrastructure while Equinox will contribute its strong CTA expertise and Longchamp its deep knowledge of the European investor base. Longchamp will therefore work jointly with Morgan Stanley to distribute the CTA offering throughout Europe.

Stephane Berthet, Head of FundLogic Alternatives UCITS Platform at Morgan Stanley
, said that its collaboration with Equinox and Longchamp, and the successful launch of four CTA strategies, was an “important milestone for our Funds business. It has provided us with the opportunity to expand our product range and offer investors access to this diversifying asset class.”

David Armstrong, President and Founder of Longchamp commented: “We are thrilled to make concrete our long lasting ties with Morgan Stanley and Equinox through the creation of Longchamp. Equinox’s investment in Longchamp is a further evidence of their commitment to making the distribution of CTA strategies in a UCITS format a huge success.”

“Our venture with Longchamp allows us to implement our longstanding aspiration to establish ourselves in Europe. Morgan Stanley’s financial engineering team has been successful in the design of a unique solution through which CTA managers are able to access both the US and European regulated markets leveraging the same technology,” added Michel Serieyssol, Managing Director at Equinox and Member of the Advisory Board of Longchamp.

Brown Advisory, a leading independent investment management firm, this week announced that assets in its US Equity Growth Fund have surpassed USD1billion.

The US Equity Growth Fund was launched under its Dublin-based UCITS umbrella in November 2009 and looks to replicate the US Large-Cap Growth strategy which Ken Stuzin has managed since 1996. Stuzin now manages over USD10billion for institutions and private clients.

The fund targets companies with a history of strong, sustainable revenues, cash flow and earnings growth. One company that was recently added to the portfolio is Ecolab Inc. (ECL), an industry leader in the hospitality and food service industries, as well as in the energy business. It is their fast growing energy business, which provides specialty chemical-based solutions in the extraction and processing segments of the energy industry, that was of particular interest.

Commenting on the fund's approach to stock picking, Stuzin said: “Even as a growth manager, you have to look at what you pay. If a company is a long-term 20 per cent grower but the valuation is high, in the end it will do poorly. That is why we will trim positions or even sell as the valuation moves towards our upside target even if its growth profile is still intact.”

On reaching the significant AuM milestone, Logie Fitzwilliams, Head of Brown Advisory's international business, said: “We are thrilled to have passed the USD1billion milestone in our US Equity Growth Fund, and it has been an exciting time for all of our US equity strategies.” Fitzwilliams added: “We believe part of our success is borne out of the firm’s partnership culture and broad equity ownership, which has led to very low employee turnover. As owners of the business, our interests are aligned with those of our clients.”

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