The Eurekahedge Hedge Fund Index gained 1.06 per cent in March, bringing its year-to-date return to 4.36 per cent – the strongest Q1 performance of the hedge fund industry since the global financial crisis.
Roughly half of the hedge fund managers tracked by Eurekahedge have recovered the losses they suffered last year.
The global hedge fund industry AUM has grown by USD22.7 billion as of March 2019 year-to-date. Redemption pressure eases as quarter-on-quarter investor flows from the hedge funds industry dropped by 65.9 per cent. Investors redeemed USD32.3 billion in Q1 2019, compared to USD94.7 billion in Q4 2018.
The Eurekahedge CTA/Managed Futures Hedge Fund Index gained 2.66 per cent in March, supported by the recovering oil prices resulting from OPEC's production cut and declining US inventory levels. On a year-to-date basis the mandate has returned 2.76 per cent.
Hedge fund managers focusing on Asia ex-Japan were up 2.04 per cent in March, with strong returns registered by long/short equities hedge funds in the region. On a year-to-date basis, the Eurekahedge Asia ex Japan Hedge Fund Index has gained 7.21 per cent, supported by the recovery of Asian equity and bond markets in the first quarter of the year. The underlying Greater China and India mandates were up 12.27 per cent and 6.46 per cent respectively as of March 2019 year-to-date.
North American and European hedge fund managers were up 5.55 per cent and 2.42 per cent respectively as of March 2019 year-to-date, trailing behind their peers focusing on Asia ex-Japan. The Eurekahedge North American Hedge Fund Index and the Eurekahedge European Hedge Fund Index declined 6.19 per cent and 5.12 per cent respectively throughout the fourth quarter of 2018.
Fund managers utilising AI/machine learning strategies gained 2.59 per cent in March, bringing their year-to-date returns to 3.93 per cent. Quant strategies continued to fall out of investors' favour, with the CTA/managed futures mandate seeing investor outflows totalling USD7.5 billion as of March 2019 year-to-date, and USD29.0 billion throughout 2018.
The Eurekahedge Crypto-Currency Hedge Fund Index gained 13.56 per cent in March, bringing their year-to-date return up to 13.78 per cent. Crypto hedge fund managers have successfully outperformed Bitcoin, which was up 8.17 per cent in March and 5.58 per cent throughout the first quarter of 2019.
The Eurekahedge Custom Asia Top Gainer Composite, an equal-weighted custom index comprising some of the best performing hedge funds focusing on the Asia Pacific region was up 7.77 per cent in 2018, outperforming the Eurekahedge Asian Hedge Fund Index which declined 8.71 per cent over the same period. The index, representing USD13.0 billion of AUM has generated a Sharpe ratio of 2.80 (RFR = 2 per cent) over the last five years, vastly outperforming the average Asian hedge fund and the region's underlying equity markets. For more on this, refer to the Strategy Profile section of the Eurekahedge April 2019 report.
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