Managed Futures as an asset class, has been gaining attention and popularity. This class of investments offer returns that have little or no correlation to the equity and fixed income markets.
A result of this increased popularity is the proliferation of investment vehicles that allow access to this unique asset class. The different programs that are available are designed to make entry into this group considerably easier than what historically has been an investment reserved for the wealthy investor.
The search for appropriate alternative assets to be used to diversify investment portfolios has created a demand for ‘financial engineers’ to design and bring to the market a wide range of instruments that are promoted as the tool to use.
An investor considering an allocation to managed futures recently asked me if the Lehman Brothers' bankruptcy and the collapse of Bernard Madoff's fraudulent investment firm had been good or bad for the futures industry. There is no single or easy answer to that question.
AIMhedge is a managed futures/CTA fund based in Liechtenstein. AIMhedge started out as the semi-automised trading system of Holger Albers in the early 2000s that was fully systematised and started live trading in 2005. AIMhedge has gone on to win Best German Hedge Fund in 2008 and nominated in the top five for ‘The Best Hedge Fund over 3 Years’ by the Hedge Fund Review Magazine.
The Superfund group of investment companies was founded in 1995 by Christian Baha in Vienna, Austria, and are now among the world’s largest providers of managed futures funds. In March 1996, members of the Superfund group of investment companies launched the first fund for private investors. By 1997, with further refinement, the award-winning Superfund trading strategy emerged, resulting in a fully automated approach to trading.
Demand for managed futures is soaring as investors, stung by losses from equities during the bear market and attracted by historically high returns from the strategy, stream into alternative investments to pep up their portfolios and diversify risk.
Total assets in managed futures have more than doubled since the end of 2002, rising from US$ 50.1 billion to US$ 104.6 billion on 31 March 2004, according to data from Barclay Trading Group. In the first quarter of this year alone, assets in managed futures rose by US$ 18.1 billion, or 20.9%, with a lot of that new capital coming from traditionally conservative institutions.