In a month of stunning market volatility, hedge funds in January suffered their biggest loss since May 2012, with returns down by 2.6%, according to Preqin, an alternatives data provider.
Hedge funds pursuing equity strategies fell by 4.3% — better only by comparison with the S&P 500, which lost 5.1%, and MSCI World, down by 6.1%.
“Global economic headwinds have seen many public markets fall by in excess of 5%, so the industry has successfully hedged the losses of some investors,” Amy Bensted, Preqin’s head of hedge fund products, said in a statement.
In contrast, commodity trading advisors turned in their best monthly performance since January 2015, up 1.4%. And funds of CTAs, which plummeted to a nearly 7% loss last year, recorded the best return of any fund type in January, up 3.9%.
Macro strategies also gained in January, up by 1%.
“In light of the current market environment, these products — which can provide some noncorrelation and downside protection — may see increased interest from investors over the coming months,” Bensted said.
Preqin reported that no leading fund size group reported positive figures in January.