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Hedge Funds: Financial Risk Management recalibrates approach to the US

Since joining Financial Risk Management more than a year ago, Carrie McCabe has sparked an American revolution at the conservative British fund of hedge funds.

This article appears courtesy of

Cultural Divide By Loch Adamson 08/13/06

In April 2005, Carrie McCabe was sitting anxiously in a meeting of the portfolio management committee of fund-of-hedge-funds firm Financial Risk Management at its ultramodern headquarters just off the Strand in London. The team was discussing its flagship Absolute Alpha Diversified strategy — the core product on which FRM founder and CEO Blaine Tomlinson had built his $13 billion business. Designed to generate consistent annual returns of 5 to 7 percentage points above LIBOR, the strategy’s composition reflected its name: It was invested with nearly 100 hedge fund managers across more than a dozen strategies.

McCabe, who had just been hired as the first CEO of FRM’s 55-person affiliate in New York, was worried that such a broadly diversified fund would hold little appeal for U.S. investors. She interrupted the discussion with a question: “Who would buy that?”

Her new colleagues turned to her with a mixture of shock and bemusement; McCabe realized she had just fulfilled the stereotype of the blunt American. But she pressed on. “I don’t think I can sell a fund like that in the States,” she explained.

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