Hedge funds are losing steam, according to Morningstar research. Nearly half of all financial advisors who work with wealthy clients say they expect hedge funds to become somewhat less or much less important in clients’ portfolios in the next five years.
The average hedge fund is down about 20 percent this year, and more than half of polled advisors and institutional investors cite lack of liquidity as a top reason for their hesitation in selecting hedge funds. They also worry about hedge funds’ lack of transparency and high fees where investors pay both a management fee and performance fee.
But are hedge funds really headed for collapse? Barton Biggs, managing director of Traxis Partners, doesn’t think so. “I run a hedge fund, so I am hardly an unbiased observer,” Biggs writes for Fortune. However, he says, “nobody, and I mean nobody, really knows what hedge fund liquidity is or what redemptions are or will be… the worry is that a tsunami of redemptions from disillusioned investors will force a deluge of hedge fund selling that will depress markets further. I don’t see that happening.”