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August Hedge Fund Performance Figures

August Hedge Fund Performance

Hedge Fund Performance Figures for August 2009

Hedge funds returns have increased again in August by 1.85%, the sixth month in a row. If the industry's recovery continues hedge funds are posed to have the best year in a decade. While hedge funds produced solid returns they underperformed the U.S. stock market. The S&P 500 index rose 3.36%.

After the worst year for hedge fund performance, hedge funds are now on par for the best year since 1999 when hedge funds gained 31.3%. Even with six straight months of positive returns investors are still hesitant to keep money with hedge funds.

Still, investors were somewhat skittish about leaving their money with hedge funds according to recent data showing that clients pulled nearly three times as much money away from funds in July than in June.

Since January, the average hedge fund has gained 17.30 percent, the Hennessee Group reported while HFR puts the year-to-date gains at 14 percent. During the same time the S&P 500 gained 12.99 percent.

Managers who bet on emerging markets and financial stocks plus media and telecommunications offerings last month scored the largest gains and helped boost the overall index.

So-called short sellers who bet exclusively that stock prices will fall lost 1.23 percent in August, leaving them as the industry's biggest losers this year, with a year-to-date loss of 11.47 percent.

Despite strong returns this year, investors have continued to withdraw money from hedge funds this summer after having removed a record $152 billion in the last quarter of 2008. Source

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