The hedge fund industry continued its positive run in February, returning 2.68 per cent for the month, according to the Barclay Hedge Fund Index compiled by BarclayHedge, a division of Backstop Solutions.
By comparison, the S&P Total Return Index gained nearly 2.76 per cent in February.
For the year to date, the hedge fund industry gained 3.76 per cent up to the end of February. The S&P 500 Total Return Index returned 1.72 per cent over the same period.
All but one sector tracked in the Barclay Hedge Fund Indices gained ground in February.
“Signs that the US economy was recovering more quickly than anticipated coupled with bullish appraisals of the global economy’s prospects boosted equity markets and energy prices in February,” says Sol Waksman, president of BarclayHedge. “Though US unemployment numbers remained high, they were trending downward. There were additional indications that fiscal stimulus was having the desired effect as US retail sales had its best gain in seven months.”
Setting the pace for hedge fund sectors in February was the Emerging Markets MENA Index, gaining 7.01 per cent for the month. Other notable gainers included the European Equities Index, up 5.77 per cent, the Equity Long/Short Index, returning 5.54 per cent, the Equity Long Bias Index, gaining 4.75 per cent, and the Technology Index, advancing 4.68 per cent.
The lone hedge fund sector in the red in February was the Emerging Markets Latin American Equities Index, down 2.84 per cent.
For the year to date the Technology Index led the pack, returning 7.42 per cent. The Distressed Securities Index was up 6.81 per cent, the European Equities Index gained 6.78 per cent, the Healthcare & Biotechnology Index advanced 6.49 per cent and the Equity Long Bias Index returned 6.46 per cent.
The only sector losing ground thus far in 2021 was the Emerging Markets Latin American Equities Index, down 5.91 per cent.