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Barclay CTA Index Gains 5.00% in February, 7.17% Year to Date; Best Start for Managed Futures Since 1997

FAIRFIELD, Iowa, March 17, 2008– Managed futures gained 5.00% in February according to the Barclay CTA Index compiled by BarclayHedge.

“In the first two months of 2008, the Barclay CTA Index has gained 7.17%,” says Sol Waksman, founder and president of BarclayHedge.

“The last time the Index started out this strong was in 1997, when it was up 7.48% by the end of February.”

Barclay's Diversified Traders Index is also off to a fast start in 2008, gaining 13.86% in just two months. In 2007, the Index rose a total of 11.41% for the entire 12 months.

“In contrast to the targeted strategies of agricultural, currency, or financial and metals traders, diversified traders are able to seek out and take advantage of profitable trends in a wide range of market sectors,” says Waksman.

“So far in 2008, CTAs using a diversified strategy have been making all the right moves.”

All eight of Barclay’s CTA indexes were profitable in February. The Diversified Traders Index jumped 8.76%, Systematic Traders gained 5.91%, Discretionary Traders were up 4.52%, Agricultural Traders rose 2.83%, and Financial and Metals Traders gained 2.65%.

“In February, widespread concern over the possibility of a recession and inflation fears further weakened the US Dollar and helped drive commodity prices higher,” says Waksman.

“At the same time, US interest rates and equity indices continued to trend lower.”

The Barclay BTOP50 Index, which monitors performance of the largest traders, rose 3.97% in February.

“Due to liquidity constraints in the commodity futures markets, the largest traders oftentimes find it necessary to allocate a larger proportion of their portfolios to the financial futures markets,” says Waksman.

“But even with proportionally less exposure to commodities, the biggest traders are off to their best start since 2003.”

Click here to view 28 years of Barclay CTA Index data.

Sol Waksman is an experienced media source, providing perspectives on hedge fund and managed futures trends. For more commentary or background, call 641-472-3456 or email swaksman@barclayhedge.com.

BarclayHedge, formerly known as The Barclay Group, was founded in 1985, and actively tracks more than 6,600 hedge funds, fund of hedge funds, and managed futures programs. Barclay has created and regularly updates 18 proprietary hedge fund indexes and eight managed futures indexes.

Institutional investors, brokerage firms and private banks worldwide utilize Barclay’s data as performance benchmarks for the hedge fund and managed futures industries.