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Foreign Exchange

EM currency-denominated futures funds in vogue, says AHL

Hong Kong-based institutional investors are developing a strong appetite for diversified opportunities, AHL CEO Tim Wong tells EuromoneyFXNews.

Wong, head of Man Group’s flagship $20bn AHL fund, says many are keen on investing in managed futures funds, in search of stronger returns.

“We’ve had a presence in Hong Kong for 15 years,” says Wong, “and we offer many different investments throughout Asia because of the scale of our operations. Hong Kong is developing. I’m sure there’ll be a lot of experimentation in investible products. People there are comfortable investing in managed futures funds.”

AHL has begun offering investors a renminbi share class, allowing them to invest in the fund in local currency. The offering – in its early investor phase – will be priced at Rmb10 ($1.54) per share. The minimum buy-in will be Rmb200,000 (or a dollar equivalent). The minimum redemption will be 5,000 shares, with liquidity offered on a weekly basis.

Man Group has about 40 sales and marketing personnel in Hong Kong, Wong states, while AHL has an 11-strong trading operation.

Wong, though, does not expect the share-class offering to become ubiquitous in the region. “It’s not for everyone,” he says. “Clearly, people are buying into the renminbi story, but we’re not trying to promote this as better than any other currency-denominated fund. It’s largely aimed at people who are either holding yuan or want to hold yuan.”

Asked whether he thinks other Asia-invested macro funds might follow suit, Wong says it is possible.

Last year, AHL launched a gold-denominated fund through its Australian office – an offering that proved popular with Japanese investors, Wong says. In 2009, it launched a Brazilian real-denominated fund.

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