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NEWSLETTER | 11 Jun 2021  

The engine room

hedgeweek hugh leask captioned.jpg While crypto’s price volatility continues to garner column inches and create considerable consternation across financial markets, the development of digital asset infrastructure, the growth of its investor base, and the way that the sector’s products and investment strategies are expanding at a breakneck pace often flies under most mainstream radars.

Against that backdrop, panelists at the inaugural DigitalAssetsLIVE summit, hosted by Hedgeweek and our sister publication Institutional Asset Manager, took an extensive roam around the crypto and digital asset engine room. Thursday’s event explored the myriad legal and regulatory hurdles, custody and security issues, and future shape of the still-evolving asset class, with speakers making the case for this once-frontier market’s inclusion in institutional investors’ portfolios.

In a deep-dive discussion to close out the one-day summit, high-profile crypto evangelist Anthony Scaramucci put forward a powerful case for bitcoin investing, and suggested decentralised finance technology is helping curb systemic risk in financial markets.

Elsewhere this week, new data published by Hedge Fund Research shows the industry remains in fine form heading into the second half of 2021. Overall, HFR’s main Fund Weighted Composite benchmark has gained 9.9 per cent in the first five months of the year – its best January-to-May run in 25 years. 

As shuttered economies start to unlock, hedge funds posted their eighth consecutive monthly return in May, with commodities, activist, special situations, and fundamental value managers in particular making hay from continued volatility and inflation themes.

One such firm notching up eye-catching returns in the shifting market landscape is Altana Wealth, the credit, currency and special situations-focused hedge fund led by former Trafalgar Asset Managers co-founder Lee Robinson. The firm’s Distressed Opportunities Fund has soared into triple-digit territory over the past nine months by capitalising on the rebound in energy markets, where Covid-driven turbulence has thrown up an assortment of restructuring and distressed credit plays, notably in the offshore oil services sector.

This week’s feature story profiles SIGTech, a London-based quantitative platform which spun out from Brevan Howard in 2019. Founder and CEO Bin Ren explained how the next generation information evaluation, curation and analysis platform is creating a “data refinery” which utilises state-of-the-art technology and engineering to assist hedge funds in developing investment ideas and, ultimately, generate returns.

Hugh Leask
Editor, Hedgeweek


DeFi curbs systemic risk amid bitcoin volatility, Anthony Scaramucci tells Hedgeweek
Fri | 11 Jun 2021, 07:25
Decentralisation of cryptocurrencies is helping curb systemic risk amid the ongoing digital asset price volatility, Anthony Scaramucci, founder and managing partner of SkyBridge Capital, told Hedgeweek on Thursday.
How changing market infrastructure is taming cryptocurrency’s “Wild West” image among investors
Fri | 11 Jun 2021, 07:33
Few sectors have endured such colossal price swings and asset volatility in recent weeks as cryptocurrencies, but speakers at the inaugural DigitalAssetsLIVE summit on Thursday said evolving market infrastructure, growing product selection, and positive investment performance continue to drive digital assets’ institutionalisation, drawing more capital allocators into this once frontier market. 
New Pictet Asset Management white paper outlines hedge funds' vital role in responsible investment
Fri | 11 Jun 2021, 11:02
In a new white paper, Merrill Sepehrnia, Head of Total Return Sustainability at Pictet Asset Management, explains why hedge funds are well placed to uncover ESG issues and help drive the ESG agenda forward.
Hedgeweek Americas Awards 2021: Call for hedge fund manager data submission to Bloomberg
Fri | 4 Jun 2021, 08:10
Hedgeweek, in partnership with Bloomberg, is starting the analysis of US and Americas-based hedge fund performance ahead of the annual Hedgeweek Americas Hedge Fund Awards. Hedge funds who wish to be considered for the awards must have a fund profile on Bloomberg’s Hedge Fund Database by 25 June, 2021.
Quantamental approach gains ground
Thu | 10 Jun 2021, 15:04
By A Paris – The volatility experienced since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in March 2020 has largely been a positive development for alpha-hunting hedge fund managers who were able to take advantage of the arbitrage opportunities available. However, various market forces saw those at extreme ends of the investment approaches come under pressure – causing the convergence of quantitative and fundamental philosophies to rise in appeal.
Friedberg Global-Macro Hedge Fund to limit new subscriptions to match cash outflows
Fri | 11 Jun 2021, 08:53
Toronto Trust Management Ltd (TTML) has that, until further notice, acceptance of new subscriptions for units of Friedberg Global-Macro Hedge Fund – one of the Friedberg Alternative Mutual Funds – will be limited so as to match, as clearly as possible, the amount of cash outflows of the Fund, primarily due to redemptions and fees. 
May brings global divergence in factor performance
Thu | 10 Jun 2021, 10:44
Following a 'harmonious' Q1, when global markets saw almost identical factor winners and losers, it was a definite case of 'discord' in May, with the month seeing global divergence in factor performance.

Data Management & Analytics in Focus 2021

This report examines a number of different dimensions of data management, science and analysis. It stresses the importance of protecting a firm’s data, both from external attacks and internally grown risks. The report also outlines the growing use of natural language processing, particularly in the arena of ESG investing. As the effects of the pandemic persist, it also underscores the growing appeal of quantamental investing, which sees fundamental managers and quantitative investors working together to generate better returns for clients. 


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