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Fund Liquidations Up in Q1 2010 Despite Performance Gains

A somewhat surprising statistic to come out of the first quarter of 2010 is that the number of hedge funds closing their doors rose while solid performance continued in the beginning of the year.  Hedge fund liquidations increased in Q1 2010 after falling for the previous four quarters of 2009.  Hedge fund liquidations rose to 240 last quarter while the number was just 165 in Q4 2009.

Typically, liquidations of hedge funds track performance. In 2008, a record 1,471 funds shut down as that index fell a sharp 19.03%.

HFR President Ken Heinz said heightened risk awareness among investors has made survival more difficult for small funds.

"There is asset growth in the first quarter, but it all went to the larger firms as investors are still very sensitive to risk, especially the structural risk in the firms," he said. HFR said there was $13.76 billion of net asset flow to funds in the first quarter.

Nottingham Investment Administration, a service provider to hedge funds, said some funds might have opted for a fresh start after the financial crisis.

"Some funds hung on through 2008 and 2009," said Kip Meadows, Nottingham's chief executive. "But when they see that their funds are not going to work or they can't have a good three-year track record, some just folded and [will] start all over again."  Source

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