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Eight Uninterrupted Months of Net Inflows Swell Hedge Fund Coffers by $180 Billion

CTAs Come Back Strong in October, Reap $1.1 Billion More Investor Capital


The global hedge fund industry attracted a healthy $26.5 billion in new assets in October. The month’s inflows represented 0.59% of industry assets, according to the Barclay Fund Flow Indicator published by BarclayHedge, a division of Backstop Solutions.

It was the hedge fund industry’s eighth straight month of inflows, with the industry attracting $180.5 billion in new assets over the period.

A $44.0 billion trading profit for the month brought total hedge fund industry assets under management to more than $4.66 trillion as October ended.

“Equity markets shook off the September swoon and enjoyed a robust rebound in October. U.S. equities notched their best month in a year that, heretofore, was already full of wins. Hedge Funds generally (and particularly equity-focused funds) tended to have a strong month as well,” said Ben Crawford, Head of Research at BarclayHedge. “The rapid bounce-back from September’s widespread losses appeared to reinforce confidence in pro-Hedge Fund narratives and investors rewarded the industry with yet another strong set of net inflows.”

All but a handful of hedge fund sub-sectors experienced net inflows in October. Multi-Strategy funds led the way adding $13.2 billion, 2.8% of assets, followed by Fixed Income funds bringing in $6.8 billion, 0.7% of assets, Merger Arbitrage funds adding $2.1 billion, 2.4% of assets, Equity Long Bias funds taking in nearly $2.0 billion, 0.6% of assets, and Equity Long-Only funds with $1.1 billion in inflows, 0.4% of assets.

Sub-sectors experiencing net redemptions in October included Macro funds with $2.2 billion in outflows, 1.1% of assets, Emerging Markets – Global funds shedding $1.3 billion, 0.6% of assets, Balanced (Stocks & Bonds) funds with $1.2 billion in redemptions, 0.2% of assets, and Distressed Securities funds with $42.3 million in outflows, 0.2% of assets.

After two straight months of net redemptions, the managed futures industry returned to inflows in October, bringing in $1.1 billion in new assets. Three of four CTA sectors posted inflows for the month. Discretionary CTAs brought in $498.9 million, 3.0% of assets, Systematic CTAs added $453.3 million, 0.1% of assets, and Hybrid CTAs saw $130.5 million in inflows, 0.7% of assets.

The lone CTA sub-sector experiencing redemptions in October was Multi Advisor Futures Funds with $395.5 million in outflows, 3.0% of assets.

12-Month Flow Trends

For the 12 months through October, the global hedge fund industry saw $215.8 billion in inflows. A $424.3 billion trading profit over the period brought total industry assets to the $4.66 trillion figure as October ended, up from $4.53 trillion at the end of September and up from $3.60 trillion a year earlier.

Again in October, 11 of the 19 hedge fund sub-sectors tracked reported 12-month inflows. Fixed Income funds were the 12-month leader adding $82.4 billion, 10.7% of assets, Sector Specific funds brought in $55.2 billion, 24.0% of assets, and Multi-Strategy funds posted $39.8 billion in inflows, 11.4% of assets.

Other sub-sectors with notable 12-month inflows included Event Driven funds adding $24.9 billion, 13.3% of assets, Emerging Markets – Asia funds with $20.0 billion in inflows, 15.0% of assets, Equity Long-Only funds taking in $16.2 billion, 9.1% of assets, and Merger Arbitrage funds adding $11.3 billion, 14.0% of assets.

Hedge fund sub-sectors with the largest 12-month outflows included Balanced (Stocks & Bonds) funds with $23.8 billion in redemptions, 5.1% of assets, Macro funds with $14.4 billion in outflows, 7.9% of assets, Equity Long Bias funds shedding $11.1 billion, 3.5% of assets, and Equity Market Neutral funds with $3.9 billion in redemptions, 6.8% of assets.

Over the 12 months through October the managed futures industry brought in $11.8 billion in new assets. A $35.8 billion trading profit over the period contributed to the $355.8 billion in industry assets as October ended, up from $291.7 billion a year earlier.

All four managed futures sub-sectors continued to experience 12-month inflows through October. Systematic CTAs added $7.1 billion over the period, 2.6% of assets, Discretionary CTAs brought in $2.6 billion, 21.7% of assets, Hybrid CTAs saw $2.1 billion in inflows, 23.3% of assets, and Multi Advisor Futures Funds brought in $393.8 million, 4.0% of assets.

“In the intervening months since the 2020 COVID Crash, both the Hedge Fund industry and the Managed Futures business have been on a remarkable trend with respect to asset growth,” reflected Crawford. “While the angle of attack and the degree of confidence has been somewhat less pronounced for CTAs than for Hedge Funds, it is nevertheless noteworthy that that CTAs have steadily increased their aggregate AUM by nearly $4 billion a month for the last 20 months. As a result, CTAs globally are working today with nearly 30% more capital than they had at the inception of the pandemic era.”


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. Institutional investors, brokerage firms and private banks worldwide utilize BarclayHedge indices as performance benchmarks for the hedge fund and managed futures industries.



Janet Falk

(212) 677 5770