Hedge funds gained 2.11% in September, according to the Barclay Hedge Fund Index compiled by BarclayHedge. The Index is up 7.30% year to date.
"The Fed's decision to delay tapering surprised investors and drove equity prices higher through mid-month," says Sol Waksman (pictured), founder and president of BarclayHedge. "Fears over the possible failure of US budget and debt ceiling negotiations gained momentum and equity markets sold off in the second half of September, but equities remained profitable on the month as measured by a gain of 5.0 percent for the MSCI World Index."
All but one of Barclay's 18 hedge fund indices had gains in September. The Barclay Healthcare & Biotechnology Index jumped 4.26%, Equity Long Bias gained 3.65%, the Technology Index was up 3.35%, Emerging Markets added 2.92%, Pacific Rim Equities gained 2.62%, and European Equities were up 2.03%.
The only losing hedge fund strategy in September was the Equity Short Bias Index, which lost 3.55%. Equity Short Bias is down 19.84% year to date, and the index is on track to match the 24.12% loss suffered in 2012.
After three quarters in 2013, the Healthcare & Biotechnology Index has gained 20.93%. Pacific Rim Equities are up 17.20%, the Equity Long Bias Index has gained 15.24%, Distressed Securities have returned 11.37%, and Technology is up 9.38%.
"Healthcare and Biotechnology is BarclayHedge's top-performing hedge fund index year to date, and is on track for its best yearly performance since enjoying a 27.91% gain in 2009," says Waksman. "The passage of the Affordable Care Act in the US, coupled with the expectation of greater demand for healthcare services due to increases in both population and life expectancy have had a very positive impact on the sector".
The Barclay Fund of Funds Index gained 1.33% in September, and has returned 4.95% year to date.