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Hedge-fund assets below US$3t for first time since 2014

[LONDON] Assets managed by hedge funds globally last month fell to less than US$3 trillion for the first time since the industry hit the milestone in May 2014, according to data from eVestment.

Investors pulled a net US$21.5 billion, the most in the opening month of a year since 2009, while losses led to a US$43.2 billion drop in assets under management. The industry managed US$2.96 trillion at the end of January. Hedge funds that suffered losses last year were hit by redemptions worth US$24.8 billion in January.

Equity, fixed-income and multistrategy hedge funds suffered net outflows, though interest in those betting on commodities rose for the fifth straight month in January as investors pledged US$1.2 billion, the most since mid-2014.

"This is a major reversal of a trend which dates back to mid-2012," eVestment said in a statement on Friday. "Hedge fund investors appear to firmly believe there are significant opportunities in the commodity space."