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Rise in hedge fund exits show impact of Cyprus crisis

Date: Thursday, April 11, 2013
Author: Clare Hutchison, Reuters

Investors took more cash out of hedge funds than they put in over the past month, when a banking crisis in Cyprus caused wobbles in financial markets.

Hedge fund administrator SS&C GlobeOp's Capital Movement Index, which tracks monthly net subscriptions to and redemptions from funds, measured minus 1.22 percent in April, its lowest since January.

The data published on Wednesday was in line with GlobeOp's Forward Redemption indicator (FRI), a monthly snapshot of clients giving notice to withdraw their cash as a percentage of assets under administration. This indicator hit a three-month high in March because of investor concerns about the Cyprus crisis.

Cyprus has since secured a bailout from the European Union and the International Monetary Fund, in a deal that forces losses on wealthier depositors.

While the crisis boosted exit demands, total monthly inflows actually increased in March, suggesting money is being moved from one fund manager to another, instead of out of the industry altogether.

Hedge fund investors, who pay high fees in the hope of outperforming markets, have seen funds lag behind equity markets recently.

The average fund is up 4.69 percent in the first three months of this year, according to the SS&C GlobeOp Hedge Fund Performance Index, underperforming a 7.3 percent rise in the S&P 500 index.

Around 10 percent of the global hedge fund industry is covered by SS&C GlobeOp's data.

Separately, an alternative index, the Eureka Hedge Fund Index, showed funds gained 0.71 percent last month, against the MSCI World Index, which rose 1.76 percent. Eurekahedge said $20 billion flowed into hedge funds in the first quarter of 2013.