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Managed Futures Industry Celebrates Broad-Based Gains Again in April

Returns 2.42% on the Month and 7.85% On the Year


While it feels as if there has been a dearth of feel-good stories in financial markets as of late, managed futures funds have been quietly and consistently building a counternarrative. According to the Barclay CTA Index, compiled by BarclayHedge, a division of Backstop Solutions, CTAs marked a +2.42% return in April—their fifth consecutive positive result.

For calendar year 2022 thus far, the index is up +7.85%.

Six of eight managed futures subsectors had gains in April. The MPI Barclay Elite Systematic Traders Index led the way, showing an impressive +4.86%. It was followed by the Diversified Traders Index which returned +2.10%; the Systematic Traders Index up +1.79%; the Currency Traders Index +1.30%, the Discretionary Traders Index +0.76% and the Financial & Metal Traders Index +0.43%.

The sole subsector in the red was the Cryptocurrency Traders Index, which shed -11.05%. The Agricultural Traders Index was effectively flat month-over-month.

All but one subsector has enjoyed aggregate gains for the year 2022 so far. The MPI Barclay Elite Systematic Traders Index is the pacesetter, up a compounded +16.89% through April. It is followed by the Diversified Traders Index which is up +11.83% year-to-date. At a modest distance further, we find the Discretionary Traders Index and the Systematic Traders Index with returns of +8.70% and +8.63% respectively.

The sole outlier, the Cryptocurrency Traders Index, continued to struggle in April, bringing its year-to-date losses to -17.95%.

“For the fifth month in a row, managed futures have proved their mettle as a diversifying agent and demonstrated their worth as a hedge. As almost all other asset classes slid and convulsed their way through April, CTAs stood out by booking profits,” noted Ben Crawford, Head of Research at BarclayHedge.

The Barclay BTOP50 Index, which tracks the performance of the largest CTAs open for new investment, returned +5.22% in April. For the year to date, the BTOP50 gained +14.12%.

For a complete table of Barclay CTA Index results as well as historical data, click here.

About Backstop Solutions

Backstop’s mission is to help the institutional investment industry use time to its fullest potential. We develop technology to simplify and streamline otherwise time-consuming tasks and processes, enabling our clients to quickly and easily access, share and manage the knowledge that’s critical to their day-to-day business success. Backstop provides its industry-leading cloud-based productivity suite to investment consultants, pensions, funds of funds, family offices, endowments, foundations, private equity, hedge funds and real estate investment firms.

BarclayHedge, a division of Backstop, currently maintains data on more than 6,900 hedge funds, funds of funds and CTAs. The BarclayHedge Indices are utilized by institutional investors, brokerage firms and private banks worldwide as performance benchmarks for the hedge fund and managed futures industries.



Janet Falk

(212) 677-5770