Browsing: Newly Added

Newly Added

The Low Volatility Anomaly: Gunpowder Inc.

Feb 26th, 2017 | Filed under: CAPM / Alpha Theory, Finance & Economics, Financial Economics Theory, Hedge Funds, Newly Added, Structure of the Hedge Funds Industry

In a new paper David Blitz, the head of quantitative strategies for Robeco Asset Management, crunches numbers and reaches a surprising conclusion, precisely contrary to an intuitively appealing theory about the low volatility anomaly.  But … let’s begin from the beginning. Standard financial economic theory holds that investors are compensatedRead More


Liquid Alternatives: A Look Back at Mercer’s Look Around

Feb 23rd, 2017 | Filed under: Liquid Alternative Investiments, Liquid Alts, Newly Added, Other Topics in A.I.

The market for liquid alternatives continues to grow and adapt. On St. Valentine’s Day of this year, ABR Dynamic Funds announced that it was launching its first Irish-domiciled UCITS V fund. Maybe it should have waited until St. Patrick’s Day? At any rate, the fund “seeks U.S. participation in aRead More


Why Do Alpha Seekers Find It In the Small Caps?

Feb 21st, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Alpha & Beta, Finance & Economics, Financial Economics Theory, Newly Added

The median performance of active fund managers with a small-cap mandate is uniformly better than the performance of their colleagues with a large cap mandate against their respective benchmarks. Fewer than 40% of large-cap managers outperform U.S. large-cap equity. More than 60% of their small-cap counterparts do so. The patternRead More


Hedge Fund Managerial Talent: From Quality to Quantity

Feb 20th, 2017 | Filed under: Hedge Fund Industry Trends, Hedge Funds, Newly Added, Structure of the Hedge Funds Industry

A new report that comes to us jointly from EY and the AIMA indicates that hedge fund industry leaders believe that one of the secrets to success in the field is investment in, and thus retention of, talent. When the report was released, Dan Thompson, partner in the EY financialRead More


Earnings Releases & Social Media: Listening to the Crowd

Feb 16th, 2017 | Filed under: CAPM / Alpha Theory, Finance & Economics, Financial Economics Theory, Newly Added

Earnings releases, and the “seasons” made up out of them, have become almost a comforting ritual in the investment world. The days leading up to a company’s release often incites a good deal of more or less well-informed guesswork. That guesswork may become significantly more informed through crowdsourcing. That isRead More


Formula: Information + Liquidity + Short Time Horizon = Short Sales Profits

Feb 14th, 2017 | Filed under: Equity Hedge Funds, Event-Driven Hedge Funds, Hedge Funds, Newly Added

Jaewon Choi and two other scholars recently presented a paper that offers “direct evidence about the profitability of hedge fund short trades in equities.”  What is intriguing about this paper is not only what it finds about the profitability of short trades, but its method, why its authors consider theirRead 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


Moszoro and Bykhovsky on Political Cognitive Biases

Feb 12th, 2017 | Filed under: Business News, Finance & Economics, Newly Added

In the politically charged atmosphere of our day, especially in the United States since the most recent presidential inauguration, it would be unwise to presume that hedge fund managers are exempt from political cognitive biases, or that these biases leave their portfolio decisions unaffected. Marian Moszoro and Michael Bykhovsky co-wroteRead More


The State of the OTC Index Dividend Swap Market

Feb 9th, 2017 | Filed under: Derivatives, Equity-linked Structured Products, Newly Added, Risk Management & Operations, Structured Products

In a new article in the Journal of Alternative Investments, Scott Mixon and Esen Onur quantify the over the counter index dividend swap market. Along the way, they provide a good example of the scientific method: positing a relationship, testing it against the data, and then abandoning it when theRead More


CHANGE MANAGEMENT FOR FUND MANAGERS

Feb 8th, 2017 | Filed under: Investor Relations, Newly Added, Sales & Marketing in the AI Industry

By Diane Harrison Looking to the past as a way to gauge the likely direction of the future is a popular exercise in the first quarter of every year. It’s a natural desire for people to want to improve on their personal and professional lives; taking stock of where theyRead 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


EY on Real Estate Private Equity Trends

Feb 5th, 2017 | Filed under: Equity Types of Private Equity, Newly Added, Other Issues in Private Investments, Private Investments, Real Assets, Real Estate, Real Estate Equity Investments

The global real estate division of financial consultancy Ernst & Young recently published a report on the private equity outlook in the real estate space. As the head of the division, Mark Grinis, says in an introduction, the premise of the report is that success in this space requires managerialRead More


SWFs Looking to PEs Both as Intermediaries and as Co-investors

Feb 2nd, 2017 | Filed under: Infrastructure, Natural Resources and Land, Newly Added, Operationally Intensive Real Assets, Real Assets

A recent working paper from the European Corporate Governance Institute discusses direct investment by sovereign wealth funds in private equity transactions – that is, it discusses an ongoing shift from investing in PE funds to co-investing with PE funds. The paper describes this as a trend especially viable in theRead More


Pitfalls and Publicly Owned Hedge Fund Managers

Jan 31st, 2017 | Filed under: Alternative Investments in Context, Hedge Funds, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

Two scholars affiliated with Singapore Management University have published a study of “the pitfalls of going public,” that is, of what can happen when the management of a hedge fund becomes a publicly owned company. They conclude that the going-public process itself breaks the alignment of incentives between managers andRead 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


Big Data is Old Hat: Machine Learning is Hot

Jan 26th, 2017 | Filed under: Algorithmic and high-frequency trading, Allocating to A.I., Benchmarking & Performance Attribution, Business News, Finance & Economics, Newly Added

A year ago, in a report on Big Data and investment management, Citi Business Advisory Services predicted that “with the improved volume, velocity and variety of data inherent in the big data approach, the innovation seen in systematic trading models over the past decade could accelerate.” One of the platformsRead More


A Vision of 2020 and 6 Imperatives

Jan 24th, 2017 | Filed under: Industry Size & Managers, Newly Added, Other Topics in A.I., SRI and Clean Energy, The A.I. Industry

PwC, the global network of business and tax consultancies, has put out a white paper on the near future of the alternative asset management industry, to and through the year 2020. The paper begins with some numbers: by 2020, PwC expects the industry’s assets under management to grow to atRead More


Hedge Fund Performance: A Multi-Factor Model

Jan 22nd, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Benchmarking & Performance Attribution, Hedge Funds, Newly Added

Dimitrios Stafylas, of Aston University, Aston Business School, in Birmingham, England, has proposed a “holistic” model of hedge fund performance attribution with three key features: Irrespective of underlying fundamentals, it is only during good times that hedge funds as a class deliver significant excess return to their investors; Also duringRead More


On the Bitcoin Blockchain: Looking Under the Hood

Jan 19th, 2017 | Filed under: Algorithmic and high-frequency trading, Business News, Currencies, Digital currencies, Emerging Alternative Investments, Finance & Economics, Newly Added, The Global Economy & Currencies

More than a year ago, the Capco Institute Journal of Financial Transformation (Journal) ran a “critical assessment,” by Robert Sams, of bitcoin blockchains as a means of distributed clearing. With both bitcoins and blockchains newly in the news, Sams’ informed assessment is worth another look. Two years ago, Nasdaq announcedRead More


Active Share: Empirical and Conceptual Issues

Jan 17th, 2017 | Filed under: CAPM / Alpha Theory, Finance & Economics, Financial Economics Theory, Newly Added

In 2009, Martijn Cremers, of the University of Notre Dame, and Antti Petajisto of New York University, introduced a new portfolio measurement they called Active Share, measuring in percentage terms the deviation of a portfolio from its benchmark (deviation in holdings, not in performance). Thus, a portfolio with 100% activeRead More


A Brief History of Hedge Fund Regulations in India

Jan 15th, 2017 | Filed under: Hedge Fund Regulation, Industry Size & Managers, Newly Added, Regulatory Environment, The A.I. Industry

The investment world now understands that politics and related matters of business climate in the Republic of India since the dramatic victory of the Bharatiya Janata Party in 2014. What is less well known is that alternative investment funds have been among the beneficiaries of the broader change. This storyRead More


Funds of Funds and the Task of Financial Intermediation

Jan 12th, 2017 | Filed under: CAPM / Alpha Theory, Finance & Economics, Financial Economics Theory, Newly Added, Private Investments, Venture capital

Are funds of funds a valuable form of intermediation? Robert Harris, of the University of Virginia, Darden School of Business, and three other distinguished scholars looked at this question in a Darden Business School Working Paper, and they decided that, at least with regard specifically to the role of FOFsRead More


Cash Management Strategies for Private Equity

Jan 10th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Newly Added, Other Issues in Private Investments, Private Equity, Private Investments

Private equity investors have a distinctive cash management question: what do they do with the money that has yet to be drawn or called? Keeping cash in pillow cases is, here as always, less than the optimal solution. One of the defining features of a PE firm is that anRead More


Another Take on ‘A Modest Proposal’

Jan 9th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Asset allocation, Hedge Funds, Newly Added

By Diane Harrison Jonathan Swift, one of the great satirists of all time, published a disturbing and provocative essay, ‘A Modest Proposal,’ in 1729 suggesting a unique and terrible solution to Ireland’s famine crisis. In his piece, Swift recommended cannibalism as a wholesale solution to Ireland’s struggles with overpopulation, starvation,Read More


OECD Report on Insurer Portfolio Investment Strategies

Jan 8th, 2017 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Institutional Asset Management, Newly Added

A paper by Helmut Gründl and two associates, discussed at the June 2016 meeting of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and published “on the responsibility of the Secretary-General” thereof, proposes that the regulators of insurers active in the various member countries should see their role not as theRead More


The Federal Reserve on Distributed Ledger Technology (that is, on Blockchains)

Jan 5th, 2017 | Filed under: Finance & Economics, Newly Added, Operations, Risk Management & Operations, The Global Economy & Currencies

A large team of officers and staff affiliated with the Federal Reserve (eight with the Board in DC, five with the FR Bank of New York, one with the FRB of Chicago) have collaborated on a new paper on distributed ledger technology in payments, clearing, and settlement. Of necessity, givenRead More


The Return Characteristics of Gold Mining Stocks

Jan 3rd, 2017 | Filed under: Commodities, Commodities: Examples, Equity-linked Structured Products, Gold, Investing in Commodities, Newly Added, Structured Products

Two Maryland-based scholars have reviewed the evidence of the performance of gold mining stocks. The title of their article, which appears in the Alternative Investment Analyst Review, November 2016, puts the central question bluntly: are such stocks “more like gold or like stocks”? Let’s get the answer to that queryRead 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


Industry Headwinds: And How to Move Forward Regardless

Dec 29th, 2016 | Filed under: Asset Managers, Industry Size & Managers, Investor Relations, Newly Added, Other Topics in A.I., Sales & Marketing in the AI Industry, The A.I. Industry

In a new white paper, CaseyQuirk has identified four catalysts said to be driving secular change in the active asset management world: New buyer demands emphasizing different value propositions for asset managers. Related to this – institutions are losing relative importance to high-net-worth individuals, and these individuals “value different attributesRead More


Women in Alternatives: A Globalized Survey

Dec 27th, 2016 | Filed under: Industry Size & Managers, Newly Added, The A.I. Industry

KPMG has released its fifth Women in Alternative Investments Report. This WAI, like its four precursors, “showcases the investment insights of women in alternatives while fostering a conversation about the unique issues facing women in the industry.” Camille Asaro and Kelly Rau, Alternative Investments, KPMG, kick off the report withRead More


PE Study: Managerial Turnover is a Good Thing for Investors

Dec 26th, 2016 | Filed under: Industry Size & Managers, Newly Added, Other Issues in Private Investments, Private Equity, Private Investments, The A.I. Industry

A recent study by Franceso Cornelli and two associates indicates that there is a positive relationship, in the private equity industry, between managerial turnover and fund performance. Cornelli is Professor of Finance, London Business School, and a fellow at the Center for Economic Policy Research.  The other authors are: ElenaRead More


Ammar on the Implied Volatility Smile

Dec 22nd, 2016 | Filed under: Emerging Alternative Investments, Newly Added, Other Issues in Private Investments, Risk Management & Operations, Risk Management Strategies & Processes

In a new working paper, a scholar at the School of Finance, at the University of St Gallen, Switzerland,   Semir Ben Ammar, has analyzed the relationship between catastrophe risk and the “implied volatility smile” in stock options.  Along the way, he has proposed what may be a novel type ofRead More


Natixis asks 500 institutional investors to look into the future

Dec 20th, 2016 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Emerging markets, Finance & Economics, High-net-worth investors, Institutional Asset Management, Newly Added, The Global Economy & Currencies

Natixis Global Asset Management has released the results of a survey of 500 institutional investors, asking them their views on prospects for 2017. The surveyed institutions expect that political and economic developments could cause an increase in volatility in the year to come, and active managers have to reset theirRead More


LAME DUCKS HEADED FOR A CHANGE

Dec 19th, 2016 | Filed under: Newly Added

By Diane Harrison As 2016 winds down, U.S. investors and voters alike have embraced the concept of change. While we may not know how this will manifest in 2017, the twin fates of government and investment are moving into this unknown together, although perhaps not unafraid. Lethargy, exhaustion, languor, fatigue…allRead More


For The Netherlands: Sustainable Development Proposal

Dec 18th, 2016 | Filed under: Emerging Alternative Investments, Microfinance, Newly Added, Other Topics in A.I., SRI and Clean Energy

Eighteen major financial institutions, including ABN AMRO and ING Groenbank, have signed onto an ambitious program for sustainable development goals’ investment (SDGI). The institutions involved proclaim that they believe it is in their best interest, “as well as that of our clients and investees, to consider the largest societal challengesRead More


AIMA and KPMG on Managed Accounts

Dec 15th, 2016 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Institutional Asset Management, Newly Added

AIMA’s new managed accounts guide tells us that an investment manager considering the use of managed accounts should consider certain disadvantages that come with this product, and may want to negotiate around these difficulties with investors. For smaller investment managers in particular, the increased regulatory and operational requirements can beRead More


REITs: The Market Bought on Rumor, Sold on News

Dec 13th, 2016 | Filed under: Liquid and Fixed Income Real Estate, Newly Added, Real Assets

Real estate stocks have distinguished themselves from financials to the extent that the former group now has its own Global Industry Classification Standard (GICS) sector. A fair amount of publicity accompanied this change in August, and it catalyzed a white paper from Principal Global Investors on the REIT Breakout. TheRead More


TIAA Report On Responsibility and Farmland

Dec 11th, 2016 | Filed under: Farmland, Natural Resources and Land, Newly Added, Real Assets

Biff Ourso, TIAA’s portfolio manager for agriculture investments, says in a prefatory message to their new report that “concerns have been raised about whether investment in regions such as Brazil contribute to land conflicts, lead to the displacement of local people … or foster excessive pesticide usage.” TIAA, which hasRead More


Private Equity Placements in China

Dec 8th, 2016 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Benchmarking & Performance Attribution, Currencies, Emerging markets, Newly Added, Private Equity, Private Investments, The Global Economy & Currencies

A new paper by G. Nathan Dong and two other scholars investigates private equity placements in China and their consequences for the issuing firms. The study works from a natural experiment that resulted from regulations created by the PRC ten years ago. In 2006, the China Securities Regulatory Commission issuedRead More


Shedding Light on the ESG/SRI Scene      

Dec 6th, 2016 | Filed under: Climate change, Newly Added, Other Topics in A.I., SRI and Clean Energy

The US SIF Foundation has published its latest Trends Report on sustainable, responsible, and impact investing. On the one hand, this is a statistical snapshot of US-domiciled assets in the ESG/SRI field at years’ end 2015. On the other hand, it offers fascinating historical material making it clear how weRead 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


Global Pension Funds: Process and Best Practices

Dec 4th, 2016 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Newly Added

A new white paper from PwC, sponsored by AMAFORES, La Asociación Mexicana de Administradoras de Fondos para el Retiro (The Mexican Association of Retirement Fund Administrators) , looks at the best practices for the pension fund industry in the wake of the global financial crisis of less than a decadeRead More


Preqin on Ag Funds and Their Managers

Dec 1st, 2016 | Filed under: Farmland, Natural Resources and Land, Newly Added, Real Assets

Fundraising for agriculture/farmland-focused funds has been remarkably strong recently, according to research by Preqin, the multi-national data and consulting firm. Farmland has been aptly described as the “oldest alternative investment” and dates as far back as 9,000 years ago. The focus on Preqin’s special report on agriculture is somewhat more recentRead More


Selling Growth Stocks at the Right Time: Hedge Funds Are Good At It

Nov 29th, 2016 | Filed under: Equity Hedge Funds, Hedge Fund Strategies, Hedge Funds, Newly Added

Two scholars at Ozyegin University, in Istanbul, make the case that hedge funds have a uniquely good record in one specialized sort of alpha harvesting: they are good at finding overpriced growth stock securities and trading to their advantage on the basis of that finding, especially when other sorts ofRead More


Local and Global VC Need to Work Together for Best Results

Nov 27th, 2016 | Filed under: Newly Added, Other Issues in Private Investments, Private Investments, Venture capital

Thomas J. Chemmanur of Boston College, Carroll School of Management, and two other scholars looked into the issue whether local venture capitalists “play well together” with international VCs, and vice versa. The resulting paper, in the latest issue of the Journal of Business Venturing, suggest that entrepreneurs benefit by bringingRead More


Rudin and Marr: A Reformulation of RP Methods of Portfolio Construction

Nov 24th, 2016 | Filed under: CAPM / Alpha Theory, Finance & Economics, Newly Added

A recent article by Alexander Rudin and William M. Marr, in The Journal of Alternative Investments, seeks to change the terms of discussion of the risk parity method of portfolio construction in a way that might remove some of the counter-intuitive consequences that can dog the approach. The paper, “InvestorRead More


Infrastructure Project Finance: Benchmarking and Definitions

Nov 22nd, 2016 | Filed under: Infrastructure, Newly Added, Operationally Intensive Real Assets, Real Assets

In a new article in The Journal of Alternative Investments, three EDHEC-affiliated scholars, led by Frédéric Blanc-Brude, the director of the EDHEC Infrastructure, Singapore, look at recent improvements in the understanding of the financial performance of privately held infrastructure investments, debt or equity, with respect to benchmarking thereof.  They concludeRead More


Aftermath of 2008: Reactions to Decreased Liquidity

Nov 20th, 2016 | Filed under: Finance & Economics, Liquid Alternative Investiments, Liquid Alts, Macroeconomics, Newly Added, Other Topics in A.I., Regulatory Environment, The A.I. Industry, The Global Economy & Currencies

A new report from State Street Corporation and the Alternative Investment Management Association says that nearly half of the market participants surveyed believe that decreased market liquidity is a secular change, not a cyclical one: that is, that it is a climate that is here to stay, not a rainRead More


PE Buyout Funds: Finding or Building a Proxy

Nov 17th, 2016 | Filed under: Allocating to A.I., Asset allocation, Asset Allocation Models, Newly Added, Other Issues in Private Investments, Private Investments

Alexandre Coupe, associate director, Pacific  Alternative Asset Management Company, head of PAAMCO’s asset allocation research, and formerly of Green Street Advisors, has written a fascinating review of private equity funds. She looks at what proxies work (and which don’t work) in assisting portfolio managers who have to make asset allocationRead More