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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Another Hedge-Fund Firm Tries its Hand at Mutual Funds

by: Armie Margaret Lee

Legg Mason unit Permal Group, one of the biggest hedge funds of funds, plans to unveil its debut mutual fund on Tuesday, reports Shefali Anand in the Wall Street Journal Fund Track column. The launch of Legg Mason Permal Tactical Allocation comes three months after another hedge fund firm, AQR Capital Management, unveiled its first in a series of mutual funds (see The MFWire, 01/16/09).

Permal's mutual fund comes with an expense ratio of 175 basis points and a maximum front load of 575 bps. It will invest mainly in funds mainly from Legg Mason's affiliates.

Hedge fund shops' mutual fund forays come as the hedge fund industry, like others in the asset management sector, faces asset declines and outflows.

Anand pointed to numbers from Hedge Fund Research showing that investors yanked $152 billion in capital from hedge funds in the final quarter of 2008. 

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