Investments in liquid alternatives and managed futures mutual funds have grown rapidly, but don't expect them to stop growing now. Authors of a recent Ramius LLC
] report say that investments in liquid alternatives will continue to snowball.
The two co-authors of the report — Bill Marr
, CEO of Ramius Trading Strategies and Alexander Rudin
, principal and director of Investment Research — noted that such rapid growth makes it all the more imperative for investors to fully examine all criteria of funds before investing.
Assets under management in liquid alternatives have crossed the $250 billion mark as of year-end 2011. Meanwhile, managed futures mutual fund assets have grown to $7.5 billion in 2011 from $244 million in 2006. "Retail investors have been asking for access to managed futures strategies to augment their portfolios, so demand helped to drive the decision to open a mutual fund." Marr wrote in an e-mail to MFWire
. A unique aspect of Managed Futures is that it does not need to be altered in order to offer it in a daily liquid format, as well as serving as a way to diversify an investor's portfolio.
"As a result of the financial crisis in 2008, there has been an increase in investor appetite for alternative investments that are more liquid, more transparent, and offered through a stable, regulated investment vehicle," Marr stated in the release.
Company Press Release
Ramius: The Emergence of Liquid Alternatives and the Case for Managed Futures Mutual Funds
NEW YORK, Jul 24, 2012 — Ramius LLC ("Ramius"), the global alternative investment management business of Cowen Group, Inc. ("Cowen") COWN -0.41% , today provided an in-depth view of the liquid alternative investment space with a particular focus on managed futures investing in a comprehensive report co-authored by Ramius Trading Strategies (RTS) Chief Executive Officer, William ("Bill") Marr and Principal and Director of Investment Research, Alexander Rudin.
In the report, the team notes that:
-- The growth of investment in liquid alternatives has accelerated at a rapid pace - fivefold for alternative mutual funds since pre-crisis levels - as retail investors look for access to alternative strategies with daily liquidity, and that growth is expected to accelerate going forward;
-- Managed futures mutual fund assets alone have grown from $244 million in 2006 to $7.5 billion in 2011;
-- Given the rapid growth of the industry, it is of the utmost importance that potential investors examine a number of criteria when choosing where to put their money to work.
Bill Marr said, "As a result of the financial crisis in 2008, there has been an increase in investor appetite for alternative investments that are more liquid, more transparent, and offered through a stable, regulated investment vehicle. Within Europe this led to significant growth in UCITS funds, and here in the U.S. alternative mutual fund assets have grown exponentially. To date, there are now 323 such mutual funds in the U.S. according to Morningstar and assets have now surpassed $120 billion."
Added Marr, "As more investors look to liquid alternatives for superior portfolio construction, it is important that they truly understand the products and strategies available to them. The Ramius white paper provides research-based selection criteria for the investment community to consider when judging the multitude of products and underlying managers offering these products in order to help them make an informed investment decision."
Readers can access the white paper by clicking here: http://goo.gl/wMpDE .
RTS was founded in September 2009 and is an affiliate of Cowen Group, Inc. and Ramius Alternative Solutions LLC. RTS offers multi-manager products investing in independent managers in the managed futures and global macro space. All RTS products utilize RTS's managed account platform supported by RTS's proprietary risk and research systems as well as the operational infrastructure of Ramius.
About Cowen Group, Inc.
Cowen Group, Inc. is a diversified financial services firm and, together with its consolidated subsidiaries, provides alternative investment management, investment banking, research, and sales and trading services through its two business segments: Ramius and its affiliates make up the Company's alternative investment management segment, while Cowen and Company is its broker-dealer segment. Ramius' alternative investment management products, solutions and services include hedge funds, replication products, managed futures funds, fund of funds, real estate funds, health care royalty funds and cash management services. Cowen and Company offers industry focused investment banking for growth-oriented companies, domain knowledge-driven research and a sales and trading platform for institutional investors. Founded in 1918, the firm is headquartered in New York and has offices located in major financial centers around the world.
About Ramius LLC
Ramius, the global alternative investment management business of Cowen Group, Inc., offers a broad range of investment solutions to institutions and private clients worldwide. Founded in 1994, Ramius and affiliates manage $10.2 billion (as of April 1, 2012) across multiple asset classes and investing styles. A significant portion of Cowen's proprietary capital is managed by Ramius in strategies alongside its clients.
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