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Barclay Hedge Fund Index up 0.03% in January

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Hedge funds were up slightly in January with a gain of 0.03% overall, according to the Barclay Hedge Fund Index compiled by BarclayHedge.

“Central banks took centre stage in January’s financial turmoil as the Swiss National Bank unexpectedly abandoned its currency peg to the euro and the European Central Bank surprised investors when it announced monthly QE asset purchases that exceeded expectations,” says Sol Waksman, founder and president of BarclayHedge. “Equity markets in the US sold off, while European and Asian markets rallied.”

Hedge fund performance was mixed in January, with 12 of Barclay’s hedge fund indices making gains, while six indices lost ground. The Healthcare & Biotechnology Index was up 2.30%, Global Macro added 1.91%, the Multi Strategy Index gained 1.39%, Fixed Income Arbitrage was up 1.08%, and European Equites rose 0.94%.

“In spite of the explosive upward move of the Swiss franc, Global Macro funds were well-positioned to profit from long US Dollar positions held against short positions in a basket of currencies,” says Waksman.

In the loss column, Distressed Securities gave up 1.27%, Equity Long Bias was down 1.10%, the Event Driven Index lost 0.86%, and Pacific Rim Equities were down 0.80%.

Healthcare & Biotechnology was the strongest performing hedge fund sector in 2014 with a 21.81% gain, and is off to another fast start in 2015 with a 2.30% return in January.

The Barclay Fund of Funds Index gained 0.11% in January.

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