Gottex and Basis Capital were awarded top honours in the first full sector review of hedge funds by Standard & Poor’s, which showed a generally high quality of managers, according to the researchers.

Gottex, which is available through Select Asset Management, and Basis Capital were the two five-star managers out of a universe of 15 across 30 funds. S&P excluded international and Australian equity long/short managers, commodity fund managers and structured products providers from the review, which are rated separately. The four-star managers were: Advance Mellon GTAA; BT global return; Credit Suisse; Deutsche; HFA; Rubicon; and UBS global alpha. The three-star managers were: Barclays; Colonial (four funds); Credit Suisse (diversified); Deutsche (opportunities); Goldman Sachs; HFA (international); Merrill Lynch; Macquarie; and Pengana. There was only one manager’s fund rated two stars – Colonial First State’s tactical strategies fund. S&P has only rated hedge funds separately prior to the latest review of the sector. The researchers said that good returns across all strategies had meant manager selection would have offered better opportunities to provide alpha than tactical tilts during 2006. The Credit Suisse/Tremont hedge fund index returned 9.55 per cent in the year to date (October end). In a separate move, S&P and Investment & Technology magazine will be compiling next year Australia’s first monthly performance survey for hedge funds. The returns from about 50 managers, including equity long/short, will be published from the March issue of the magazine. There are currently two quarterly returns surveys.

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