Browsing: Institutional Investing

Institutional Investing

Hedge Funds Arms Race for Alpha

Aug 10th, 2018 | Filed under: Commodities, Consultants, Endowments & Foundations, Hedge Fund Strategies, Hedge Funds, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

By Don Steinbrugge It is no secret that the vast majority of investors, including hedge funds managers, have underperformed market indices over time. However, some managers have distinguished themselves generating very strong risk adjusted returns. Outperforming an index requires an information advantage over what is broadly available in market.  ItRead More


Asset Management in China: Expect Growth

Jul 8th, 2018 | Filed under: Asset Allocation Models, Consultants, Finance & Economics, High-net-worth investors, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, What about beta?

A new study by Casey Quirk looks at asset management in China. It makes a bold claim: that by 2030, asset management strategies broadly defined will account for 10% of total Chinese wealth. That will be a more than doubling of the corresponding number at present: 4%. If China getsRead More


Pension Funds, ‘Tilt,’ and Underperformance

Jul 1st, 2018 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Benchmarking & Performance Attribution, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Performance, Analytics & Metrics

Christina Atanasova and Gilles Chemla have posted a discussion of pension plans,where holdings show a tilt toward private equity and real estate investments. Atanasova is associate professor of finance, Beedie School of Business,  Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, BC, Canada.  Chemia is professor of financial at Imperial College Business School, London,Read More


Alternative Uses of the Fixed-Income Markets

Jun 7th, 2018 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

Aviva Investors has prepared a research report on absolute return fixed income. The report, called “Building Resilience into Portfolios,” explains that the traditional use of fixed income in a portfolio is quite straightforward. That use generally involves a long position on debt of various sorts (sovereign, corporate, developed or emergingRead More


Eurekahedge on Japan as an Investment Mandate

May 24th, 2018 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Macroeconomics, Newly Added, The Global Economy & Currencies

Eurekahedge has recently concluded its fifth annual survey of asset managers with mandates to invest in Japan. In the words of Eurekahedge chairman and CEO, Satoshi Iwanaga: “Survey results for 2018 suggest that central bank normalization is still a long way off in Japan, with investors continuing to reduce theirRead More


Where do chief investment officers come from?

Mar 23rd, 2018 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

By Charles Skorina Every year there are about 50 to 100 US nonprofit (tax-exempt) and family office CIO searches and that number will climb as more ultra-high-net-worth families (over $100 million AUM) form offices, create foundations, and hire professional investment talent. PwC forecasts a near doubling in global AUM over nineRead More


DB: Investors Newly Optimistic About Hedge Funds

Feb 22nd, 2018 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Benchmarking & Performance Attribution, Fees, Hedge Fund Industry Trends, Hedge Funds, Industry Size & Managers, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Performance, Analytics & Metrics, Structure of the Hedge Funds Industry, The A.I. Industry

Deustche Bank recently released its Alternative Investment Survey, the 16th annual.  This year the questionnaires received replies from 436 global hedge fund investors, with assets under management of $2.1 trillion, who shared their insights, sentiments, and allocation plans.  Glenn Bunn, co-head of Prime Finance at DB, said in a statementRead More


Unsophisticated Techniques of Equity Factor Investing Still Prevail

Feb 1st, 2018 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

EDHEC Risk Institute, in collaboration with ERI Scientific Beta, surveyed 114 investment professionals between June and September 2017 about their motivation and interests with regard to equity factor strategies. It found that many, especially on the asset owners’ side of things, were strikingly distant from the state-of-the-art in analytical approachesRead More


Sovereign Wealth Funds, UN Goals, and Hedge Fund Fees

Jan 30th, 2018 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Fees, Hedge Funds, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Structure of the Hedge Funds Industry

Dr. Rajiv Sharma has written an extensive literature review of “sovereign wealth funds’ investment in sustainable development sectors” for the UN sponsored high-level conference on Financing for Development. Sharma is research director, global projects center, at Stanford University. He writes in this review that there are “a number of issuesRead More


The Rationality (or Otherwise) of Public Pension Fund Managers

Jan 28th, 2018 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

A new research paper from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business discusses the rationality (or otherwise) of the return expectations of institutional investors, with especial reference to public pension funds. It finds that the returns that pension fund managers expect from their investments are extrapolated from the returns thoseRead More


KPMG’s Report Cards on Real Assets

Jan 23rd, 2018 | Filed under: Infrastructure, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Liquid and Fixed Income Real Estate, Natural Resources and Land, Newly Added, Operationally Intensive Real Assets, Real Assets, Real Estate, Real Estate Equity Investments

KPMG has posted a new paper looking at the role of real assets (defined as “anything where there is a tangible/physical asset being traded”) within a portfolio, with a focus on opportunities for U.K. based institutional investors, especially pension schemes. It begins with a brief survey of the field. RealRead More


Searching for the Right Infrastructure Manager: 3 Case Studies

Jan 14th, 2018 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Infrastructure, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Operationally Intensive Real Assets, Real Assets

A new paper from bfinance (an independent financial services consultancy headquartered in London) discusses the “dramatically different era” into which infrastructure investing has entered over the last two years. The paper, “DNA of a Manager Search: Infrastructure,” looks at three recent unlisted infrastructure searches, in order to glean some insightRead More


Global Macro: Valuable for Institutional Portfolios

Jan 7th, 2018 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Hedge Fund Strategies, Hedge Funds, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Macro and Managed Futures Funds, Newly Added

The Mekata Investment Group has published a white paper on global macro hedge funds, contending that a position in such a fund is a valuable defensive tool for an institution. Global Macros are valuable because they perform best during turbulent or volatile markets, which is when defense is most needed,Read More


Top Hedge Fund Industry Trends for 2018

Jan 3rd, 2018 | Filed under: Hedge Fund Industry Trends, Hedge Funds, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Structure of the Hedge Funds Industry, The A.I. Industry

By Don Steinbrugge Each year, Agecroft Partners predicts the top hedge fund industry trends stemming from our contact with more than two thousand institutional investors and hundreds of hedge fund organizations. The hedge fund industry is dynamic, and participants are best served by anticipating, rather than reacting to, change. Below areRead More


Hedge Funds: Myths and Pendulums

Dec 27th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Hedge Funds, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

Steben & Co., a Gaithersburg, Maryland headquartered fund of fund manager, has issued a white paper on the various unfavorable myths that it contends surround the hedge fund market. It says that four different myths are discouraging investments, and indeed that they are promulgated precisely for that purpose. The myths:Read More


Rukaiyah Adams, CIO Meyer Memorial Trust – doing good and investing well

Dec 26th, 2017 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Personalities in AI, Practitioners, Who's Who

By Charles Skorina The $90 billion Oregon Pension ranks among the top 15 in the US, but how many in the industry know the current board chair, Ms. Rukaiyah Adams? Ms. Adams was born in Berkeley, CA, grew up in diverse, northeast Portland, and returned to her home city afterRead More


Institutional Investors Expect More Vol, Higher Interest Rates: But They Fear Not

Dec 17th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Alternative Investments in Context, Consultants, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

Natixis Investment Managers has released survey data on the mood of institutional investors around the world. Natixis, which has $961 billion in assets under management, polled the decision makers of 500 institutions that together represent more than $19 trillion of assets. Among the takeaways: investors expect more volatility, in bothRead More


State Street Forecasts on Smart Beta

Dec 12th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Finance & Economics, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Liquid Alternative Investiments, Newly Added, Other Topics in A.I., Smart Beta

State Street Global Advisors has a new paper out that seeks to help State Street clients “refine their own strategic asset allocation” especially insofar as their portfolios include smart beta investments, by explaining how State Street forecasts returns, and where the forecasts as to some of the factor returns standRead More


University endowments in the crosshairs

Dec 11th, 2017 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

By Charles Skorina The U.S. has the greatest university system in the world.  But it’s expensive.  And congress is about to make matters worse by taxing the endowment earnings of “large” private college and university endowments. The latest congressional proposal aims to slap a 1.4 percent excise tax on theRead More


A look at the European pension industry

Nov 28th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

Three years ago, Amin Rajan, the CEO of CREATE-Research, prepared a study of the way that pension plans had reacted to the global financial crisis and to the subsequent financial conditions.  His study continues to be worthy of attention in 2017. The study included a survey of 190 pension plansRead More


Advice to Hedge Fund Managers on Attracting, Retaining Investors

Nov 19th, 2017 | Filed under: Fees, Hedge Fund Industry Trends, Hedge Funds, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Structure of the Hedge Funds Industry

Ernst & Young has released a new survey on how hedge fund managers may “embrace innovation to illuminate competitive advantages,” that is, to attract and retain investors and their assets. Manager may need such advice, because the investors surveyed said they are more likely to decrease allocations to hedge fundsRead More


Endowment costs: The secret history

Nov 6th, 2017 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

By Charles Skorina In early 2016 certain Congressional committees sent letters to 65 major private universities asking for information about their endowments.  They supposedly had an urgent need for this data and gave the schools just 30 days to respond. It was worded as a polite request, but it cameRead More


EIU on Institutions and Time Horizons

Oct 19th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Risk management, Risk Management Strategies & Processes

With the  sponsorship of Franklin Templeton, The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU)  has surveyed  143 investing institutions in North America (part of the global sample of 571) in order to study recent shifts in their portfolio allocation, especially with an eye to the risks that concern them and the length ofRead More


Outsourced assets under management up 18% year-over-year

Oct 18th, 2017 | Filed under: Consultants, Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

By Charles Skorina With 76 firms heard from, we’re now reporting $1.62 trillion in full-discretion assets under management by outsourced chief investment officer firms. That’s a year-over-year jump of $292 billion – or 18 percent – since September, 2016. The number of reported RFPs is also rising as institutions seek better returnsRead More


The State of Alternative Investments in Australia and New Zealand 

Oct 8th, 2017 | Filed under: Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

A new Preqin paper presents the state of the alternatives investment industry in Australia and New Zealand. Mark O’Hare, the CEO of Preqin, says in a Foreword that Preqin’s databases track 481 fund managers active in one or the other of those two countries, and 443 “significant institutional investors” TheRead More


Paying the Top Guns of Institutional Investing

Sep 11th, 2017 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Personalities in AI

By Charles Skorina Last month in Part One of this report we focused on relative performance.  We ranked 107 CIOs by trailing 5-year returns. Now, we focus on how much institutions pay these excellent people. The bare comp numbers lead us to the tricky and perennial question of whether their payRead More


Wide Range of Investors Has Wide Range of Opinions on their Managers

Sep 10th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

Intralinks, in partnership with Global Fund Media, has surveyed the opinions of limited partners: they’ve been asking LPs what they think about their GPs/managers in the alternative investment context. The bottom line of the survey is that LPs are looking in the near future to increase their allocations in alternatives.Read More


Sovereign Wealth Funds: Partners and Capability

Sep 7th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

Sometimes it pays to read footnotes and end matter, because that turns out to be where the story is. Bocconi University’s Sovereign Investment Lab has published its latest annual report on sovereign wealth funds, and this gives us a case in point. The report says that 2016 was far fromRead More


NEPC Surveys E&F Managers About Alternative Investments

Aug 27th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

NEPC, the investment consulting group that caters especially to endowments and foundations, has posted a survey about what such institutions think of marketable alternatives. This broad category “marketable alternatives” includes direct hedge funds, funds of hedge funds, liquid alternatives, and global asset allocation. Eighty-seven percent of the E&F respondents inRead More


Lessons from University Endowments

Jul 23rd, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

In a recent article for The Journal of Investment Consulting, John Mulvey and Margaret Holen look at the practice of asset allocation among large U.S. university endowments. They focus on asset category definitions in the hope of throwing some light on “the movement to define asset categories with reference toRead More


The 100+ Top Guns of Institutional Investing

Jul 12th, 2017 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Personalities in AI, Who's Who

By Charles Skorina This letter looks at the most recent five-year performance of over one hundred of the world’s best institutional investors. Endowment chief investment officers have an infinite investment horizon, a global playing field, and can invest in anything anywhere – within the broad policy limits set by theirRead More


Do Teachers Pensions Need Trumpian Negotiators?

Jun 20th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Hedge Funds, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) has issued a lengthy rebuke to and critique of the fee structure of the alternatives investment industry; in a position paper it calls The Big Squeeze. Should the title be considered obscure, the subtitle is clearer about the paper’s thesis, “How Money Managers’ FeesRead More


Pension Funds’ Portfolio Decisions: The Dutch Data

Jun 11th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

DeNederlandscheBank (DNB) issued a working paper this spring about the impact of liquidity and capital constraints on defined benefit pension plans. The paper has three authors, Dirk Broeders, Kristy Jansen, and Bas Werker. The first named author, Broeders, is the only one formally affiliated with DNB. The others are affiliatedRead More


Leading the charge into OCIO battlespace: 2 Harvardians invent an industry

Jun 7th, 2017 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

By Charles Skorina In 1973, two former Harvard roommates and budding entrepreneurs – Jim Bailey and Hunter Lewis – took on an assignment to review the investments held in their school’s endowment. Things were very different back then.  A treasurer of the Harvard Corporation with the wonderfully Bostonian name ofRead More


State Pensions and Complex Investments

May 14th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

A recent report from the PEW charitable trusts discusses the degree to which the pension funds of the states of the United States are increasing their use of “complex investments.” It also speaks to the consequences of this move. The term “complex investments” is used here to describe any departureRead More


SWFs: Growth Slows but Continues

May 4th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

Preqin’s new Sovereign Wealth Fund Review makes the point that total assets under the management of SWFs continue to grow, but the rate of growth is notably slowing. This graph, measuring in US$ trillions, illustrates the growth trend since the financial crisis. Although the space grew by $.76 trillion betweenRead More


What makes a great Chief Investment Officer?

May 1st, 2017 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Family Offices, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

By Charles Skorina All professional investors want to make money.  The question is, how and for whom? In the for-profit world of Wall Street asset managers and retail mutual funds, the differences among managers reflect investor appetites, time horizons and risk tolerances.  They must all serve their customers, or theRead More


Longevity Risk Transfer Markets: Limits to Growth

Apr 30th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Finance & Economics, Financial Economics Theory, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

It was a fairly routine item about an accomplished executive changing jobs in the asset management industry, but it caught my eye. A March 2017 news item said that Andrew Reid, until recently the head of corporate pension origination at Deutsche Bank, had left that post to work with InsightRead More


Sovereign Wealth Funds: Just Like You and Me?

Apr 2nd, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

Sovereign wealth funds, however invulnerable and leviathan-like they may seem to outsiders, have the same concerns as other institutions in the current environment. On the one hand, bond yields remain at historic lows, with $13 trillion of fixed-income securities now commanding negative interest rates. On the other hand, the globalRead More


Survey Respondents: Market Volatility is the Gravest Threat Just Now

Mar 26th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

Natixis Global Asset Management is out with its annual survey of institutional investors and their views about alternative investors. The survey included institutions around the world and of many distinct classes: corporate and public pension funds, insurance funds, sovereign wealth funds, endowments/foundations, managing amongst them $15.5 trillion. The break-down ofRead More


Foundation CIOs and the American Dream: A Conversation With Carnegie’s Kim Lew

Mar 22nd, 2017 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

By Charles Skorina This month we focus on the venerable foundations of New York City and one of their most accomplished investment pros: Kim Y. Lew, chief investment officer of the Carnegie Corporation. We have an in-depth conversation with Ms. Lew on her career in foundation investing and the future of womenRead More


A conversation with UTIMCO’s Bruce Zimmerman

Feb 13th, 2017 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

By Charles Skorina Bruce Zimmerman joined UTIMCO as Chief Executive Officer and chief investment officer in June of 2007, six months before the official start of the “great recession” in December 2007 (US National Bureau of Economic Research).But despite a 13% drop in the endowment in UTIMCO’s 2009 fiscal yearRead More


DC Sponsors and PE General Partners: A Good Marriage?

Feb 7th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added, Other Issues in Private Investments, Private Investments

The British Private Equity & Venture Capital Association, in a new paper, contends that private equity has a valuable part to play in the portfolios of defined contribution schemes, for the simple reason that the PE world offers high returns in an era of low interest rates. To make thatRead More


Texas Turmoil: UTIMCO picks a new path through a political minefield

Jan 30th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

By Charles Skorina Endowment returns took a beating last year and the turnover in chief investment officers tells the tale. Among the big names to make an exit in 2016 was Bruce Zimmerman, longtime CEO of The University of Texas Investment Management Company (UTIMCO). We wrote about endowment turnover in ourRead More


Pension Institute on the Herding Tendency of Pensions as Investors

Jan 29th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

A new paper by the Pension Institute looks at the investing behavior of UK defined-benefit plans over the past 25 years, and finds a degree of correlation that should be worrisome to plan sponsors. The sponsors might want to design an improved incentive structure “that can better motivate pension fundsRead More


PGIM:  Not All Alternatives Are Alike

Jan 2nd, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Asset Allocation Models, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

A new report from PGIM Institutional Advisory looks at an old question: what role should alternative investments play within the portfolio allocation decisions of institutions? The question is especially pressing at the beginning of 2017 because US broad equity indexes have done quite well for years, ever since the marketsRead More


Amy Falls: Meeting Harvard’s plan B

Dec 5th, 2016 | Filed under: Endowments & Foundations, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

In late July, Stephen Blyth stepped down as head of Harvard Management Company; then things happened fast. By mid-September, a hire seemed imminent and HMC was said to have winnowed the field down to just two: Narv Narvekar of Columbia and Amy C. Falls of Rockefeller University. Mr. Narvekar, whoRead More


Pension Funds, Hedge Funds, and Allocations

Nov 8th, 2016 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Newly Added

A new scholarly paper addresses the puzzle: which institutional investors are best informed? Zhe Chen, of the University of New South Wales, David Forsberg, Macquarie Graduate School of Management, and David R. Gallagher, UNSW Australia Business School,  compare hedge funds, mutual funds, pension funds, and private banking firms to determineRead More


Judge Rose: Libya’s SWF Heads Knew What They Were Doing

Nov 1st, 2016 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Legislation/Court rulings, Newly Added, Regulatory Environment, The A.I. Industry

The economic historians of posterity have their work cut out for them here. There are doctoral dissertations in the works already, no doubt. And in time several scholarly careers will hang on this.   Those scholars will have to make sense of the political developments in late-Qaddafi Libya, of the roleRead More


BLEAK HOUSE–OR THE OUTLOOK ON HEDGE FUNDS NOW

Oct 19th, 2016 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Endowments & Foundations, Family Offices, Hedge Fund Industry Trends, Hedge Funds, High-net-worth investors, Institutional Asset Management, Institutional Investing, Investor Relations, Newly Added, Sales & Marketing in the AI Industry

By Diane Harrison Charles Dickens’ Bleak House spins a tale of mystery, intrigue, family dynamics, and irony in the Victorian age that had readers gripped by its indictment of the English court system. While the novel is packed with intricate plot twists and turns, the main story line centers onRead More