NICE, France (HedgeWorld.com)–Not surprisingly, the Edhec Alternative Indexes, a summary of eight industry indexes, found that commodity trading advisers, distressed securities players and those investing in emerging markets are having a merry holiday season.

The Edhec figures come as no surprise because such strategies have topped the indexes in recent months as long/short equity managers, short sellers and arbitrageurs have struggled in the rising tide of the U.S. stock market, which recently has been at its highest level in three and half years.

In November, CTAs returned 4.9%. Thanks to a rise in commodity prices, these managers have had the best performance of all hedge fund strategies over the last three months after consistent losses in the preceding months, according to Edhec. For the year through November, the strategy lies somewhere in the middle, with only a gain of 5.33%.

Distressed securities are on top for the year thanks to low levels of market volatility and an upswing in small-cap stocks. Edhec reports that distressed managers are up 14.9% through November, while gaining 3.42% last month alone.

Emerging markets continue to improve as well, with those managers gaining 3.19% in November. For the year to date, Edhec reports a gain of 11.95% for hedge funds active in emerging markets.

Other non-directional strategies had a tougher time, with low single-digit performance in November and for the year as a whole. The only strategy to report losses is short selling, where managers gave up 5.46% in November and are down 0.49% for the year in the Edhec Alternative Indexes.

The indexes use factor analysis techniques to provide a summary of the information contained in competing hedge fund indexes. Edhec officials look for the portfolio weights to capture the largest possible fraction of information contained in the indexes. Included in the analysis are returns of the HFR, CSFB/Tremont; EACM; Altvest; Hennessee; VanHedge; CISDM; and HedgeFund.net indexes.

Contact Bob Keane with questions or comments at: bkeane@investmentadvisor.com.