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27 Jan 2009

Eze & Reuters Sponsor Obama Hedge Fund Strategy Panel

Hedge fund tech. provider Eze Castle Integration and Thomson Reuters are sponsoring a panel to discuss hedge fund strategies and regulatory considerations for the Obama administration, the 'Obama Administration & Hedge Fund Strategies panel'.

Hedge funds and investment firms are discussing whether the Obama administration will have a positive or negative impact on existing hedge fund strategies.

Moderated by Daniel Burns, Reuters U.S. Financial Markets Editor, the panel also includes Reuters correspondents Jeff Mason and Jennifer Ablan and hedge fund managers Dan Castro, Chief Risk Officer of Huxley Capital and Theresa R. Patti, CFA, Managing Director of QFS Asset Management.

The Obama Administration & Hedge Fund Strategies panel will take place in New York City on Wednesday, January 28, from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m., at the Thomson Reuters office at 3 Times Square, New York.

Eurekahedge Forecasts More Hedge Fund Launches in 2009

Hedge funds returned a healthy 1% in January, wrapping up a tumultuous 2008 at -12.3%, according to Eurekahedge. Hedge fund assets fell $380 billion or 20% in 2008, from just under $1.9 trillion to just over $1.5 trillion.

Eurekahedge's forecast expects to see more hedge fund start-ups in the near future, given the increasing number of people moving out of investment banks (whether voluntarily or otherwise) to venture into the hedge fund space.

In terms of returns, hedge funds are in a better position to generate superior returns than most other conventional managers and market players, owing to the flexibility that hedge fund managers enjoy, the Eurekahedge report says, their ability to identify new trends and investment ideas and act on them promptly.

"We anticipate trend-following strategies to continue benefiting from market movements across the currency and commodity markets, as they had through most of 2008. We expect the equity markets to remain volatile and range-bound over the next few months, but long/short managers could potentially benefit from pockets of opportunities (even if short-term ones) on both the long and the short side, given the uncertainty around the 4Q08 earnings reports and deeply discounted valuations across most sectors."

FX Trading Grows 250% as Investors Look For Alternative to Hedge Fund Trading

Deutsche Bank's foreign exchange (FX) trading platform,, reported a surge in customer numbers in 2008 as FX grew as an asset class of choice for investors amid the financial crisis.

The trading platform saw customer numbers increase by over 250%, as investors looked to FX as an alternative, and uncorrelated, asset class to equities and bonds. Volumes also notably increased from 2007, as investors took advantage of significant volatility in the market.

From a currency perspective, the EUR/USD was the most popular currency pair on the platform accounting for 41% of all trades, versus 20% of volume the previous year.

"Retail FX’s popularity as an asset class truly soared in 2008 from a customer and trading perspective," Betsy Waters, Global Director of, commented, "Looking ahead, we’re very bullish about the long term prospects for retail FX. As active traders become disenchanted with the equity markets they will turn to the FX markets for trading opportunities. In many countries, retail traders can only buy and hold equities, while FX markets offer the ability to buy and sell currencies based on your market views."

"Ultimately, FX is proven to be uncorrelated to bond and equity markets so it’s no surprise that retail investors are looking to FX, which is a proven asset class with institutional investors as a means of generating returns.” Waters concluded.