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Hedge Fund Industry Loses 0.65% in September, According to Backstop BarclayHedge

Rising infection rates, second stimulus uncertainty and contested election concerns bring an end to a five-month run of hedge fund gains

After five straight months in the black, hedge funds posted a negative number in September losing 0.65% for the month, according to the Barclay Hedge Fund Index, compiled by BarclayHedge, a division of Backstop Solutions. The hedge fund industry outperformed the S&P 500 Total Return Index, which was down 3.80% in September.

For the year-to-date, the hedge fund industry remained in positive territory, up 1.70% through September. The S&P 500 Total Return Index was up 5.57% over the same period.

By sector, September’s picture was mixed; some posting gains and other sectors giving up ground.

“Equity markets had a difficult time in September as several factors combined to shake investor confidence,” said Sol Waksman, president of BarclayHedge. “Stalled stimulus talks in Washington, fears that increasing COVID-19 case counts might prompt new lockdowns and concerns over the possibility of a contested U.S. presidential election were a drag on global equity markets.”

Among September’s gainers, the Volatility Trading Index led the way with a 1.55% return. The Merger Arbitrage Index was up 1.24%, the Convertible Arbitrage Index rose 0.85%, the Healthcare & Biotechnology Index gained 0.84%, the Event Driven Index returned 0.55% and the Pacific Rim Equities Index was up 0.37%.

Sectors in the red in September included the Emerging Markets Latin American Equities Index, off 3.41%, the Balanced (Stocks & Bonds) Index, down 2.08%, the Equity Long Bias Index, losing 1.72%, the Emerging Markets Eastern Europe Index, retreating 1.58%, the Technology Index dropping 1.26% and the Global Macro Index, falling 1.03%.

For the year-to-date, the results among various indices were similarly mixed, though gainers were in the majority. Leading the way was the Technology Index, up 14.92%, followed by the Volatility Trading Index, gaining 13.93%, the Emerging Markets Asian Equities Index, advancing 10.20%, the Healthcare & Biotechnology Index, rising 9.17%, and the Fixed Income Arbitrage Index, advancing 8.34%.

Among sectors losing ground in 2020, the Emerging Markets Latin American Equities Index was down 16.78% year-to-date, the Emerging Markets Eastern European Equities Index was off 7.03%, the Emerging Markets MENA Index lost 6.45%, the Emerging Markets Global Equities Index was down 5.19% and the Pacific Rim Equities Index was off 3.89%.

For a complete table of BarclayHedge Hedge Fund and Sub-Index results for September, as well as historical returns, 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 7,100 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.


Sol Waksman


division of Backstop Solutions Group

(641) 472-3456