August 12, 2010

Natixis Global Rolls Out Managed Futures Mutual Fund

Fund manager AlphaSimplex Group uses a trend-following strategy

Natixis Global Associates added another alternative investment fund to its product lineup on Monday, August 9, with the launch of a managed futures mutual fund. AlphaSimplex Group (ASG), an affiliate, will manage the new product, Natixis ASG Managed Futures Strategy Fund.

The fund pursues its absolute return objective using multiple trend-following models across a broadly diversified portfolio of asset classes and markets, Natixis said in a statement. ASG seeks to limit risk by managing to a strict annualized volatility target and by employing dynamic drawdown controls.

"Strategies like managed futures are among the few diversifying investment styles that can be effective even in the midst of a market crisis," Andrew Lo, one of the new fund's portfolio managers, said in the statement. "This fund answers a growing need for a broader set of diversification tools that are available in a highly liquid, transparent and passive low-cost format." Lo founded ASG in 1999, and serves as chief investment strategist.

The Natixis ASG Managed Futures Strategy Fund is a U.S. '40 Act fund, available only to U.S. investors through A, C and Y shares. According to the statement, the fund is designed to offer a risk-controlled managed futures strategy, using highly liquid futures and currency forward contracts to gain desired market exposures. Fund management employs a proprietary trend-following approach that dynamically adjusts position weights in response to changing market conditions. An annualized volatility target and dynamic drawdown controls help manage its risk.

The minimum investment is $2,500 for A and C shares, $100,000 for Y shares.

Natixis Global Associates is the distribution arm of Natixis Global Asset Management, which is headquartered in Paris and Boston. As June 30, it had $651 billion in assets under management. The firm, which currently offers investors six alternative investment products, launched the Westpeak ActiveBeta Equity Fund in early August.

Michael S. Fischer (msf7@columbia.edu) is a New York-based financial writer and editor and a frequent contributor to WealthManagerWeb.com.

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