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26 Mar 2007

Asian Regulators Discuss Hedge Funds

About 40 securities regulators from around Asia and the Pacific are meeting this week to discuss hedge funds.

The regional seminar on Collective Investment Schemes/Hedge Funds is taking place in Beijing today through the 30th as part of the APEC Financial Regulators Training Initiative. The regulators are coming from India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Singapore, Thailand and the People's Republic of China.

Min Tang, Deputy Country Director and Chief Economist for ADB's office in Beijing said "It is important to strengthen financial regulation in the region through these cost-effective programs for bank supervisors and securities regulators."

"On behalf of the China Securities Regulatory Commission, I welcome the opportunity" said Dr. Sun Jie, Director General of the commission's Department of Fund Supervision. "It presents a forum for regulators to discuss and learn from the expertise of developed countries like the United States and Australia, which have been developing their regulatory framework for Collective Investment Schemes over many years."

In May 1998, the APEC Finance Ministers Meeting endorsed the establishment of the APEC Financial Regulators Training Initiative to enhance training efforts for national and regional financial regulators within Asia.

ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in the Asia and Pacific region through pro-poor sustainable economic growth, social development, and good governance. Established in 1966, it is owned by 64 members - 46 from the region. In 2005, it approved loans and grants for projects totaling $6.95 billion, and technical assistance amounting to $198.8 million.

Trading Bonuses & Hedge Fund Sales

A major new survey of salary and bonus packages awarded to stock market traders globally reveals Monday that those operating in the Middle East achieved the highest percentage increases ahead of their counterparts in London and on Wall Street.

The sixth annual Napier Scott survey, conducted among 3,000 front office traders and sales people, reveals that Middle East packages increased by 25-30% while those in the UK went up by 17-22%, and only 10-15% in the US.

Shaun Springer, CEO of Napier Scott Executive Search, of London, said: 'The hike in Middle East salaries and bonus reflects the growing appetite for more sophisticated financial products and increasing pressure for talented professionals in this market.

Hedge Funds sales continue to be the principal area of hiring within the marketing functions although less pronounced than in 2005. The survey is the first to be published post the 2007 bonus round.

While those in trading enjoyed the highest percentage increase, and in terms of people moves in asset classes, Equity Derivatives have been the most active. They have also enjoyed the highest percentage increase in salary packages for sales and trading.

"Talk of capping City bonuses can only be counter productive. If those operating in the markets are not allowed to make these profits, from which their remuneration packages are based, they will be moved elsewhere by their banks or indeed, the whole operation."

Springer said that although he was confident that London's supremacy as the global financial center would continue, he doubts bonus levels in the UK would continue to increase at the same rate as in recent years. There is the possibility of this year's bonuses exceeding those of 2008. Since 2002 when many City bonuses were virtually halved following 9/11 and a series of stock market shocks, packages have doubled.