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Time for FoHF to reassess their strategies

With hedge funds collapsing at record rates, funds of hedge funds will need to reassess their strategies. If you can’t beat them, join them.

Research shows that 5% of hedge funds went bust in 2005 [see Asset allocation: Hedge funds in M&A turnabout, this issue], and that figure is conservative given that these were funds that were transparent and therefore on the public radar screen. Such figures add to the belief that 2006 will be the year for sector consolidation.

With SEC registration leading to increased costs, and lack of volatility and opportunities impinging on returns, smaller hedge funds, particularly those running single strategies, will be forced to club together with their peers to form multi-strategy organizations. Pending consolidation among managers is not new news; what has not been considered are the implications for funds of hedge funds.

The pool of hedge fund managers from which funds of funds can choose will naturally diminish, making it harder for the funds of funds to convince end investors that they can add value. And as hedge fund managers club together, they become more professional and transparent, raising questions about the need for funds of hedge funds as providers of due diligence.

If funds of hedge funds want to stay in business, they will have to take a leaf out of hedge fund managers’ books and seek to diversify their business lines.

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