Equity Trustees Fund services makes three new hires in London and Dublin
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14th Jan 2020 - 9:23am Equity Trustees Fund services makes three new hires in London and Dublin Submitted 14/01/2020 - 9:23am - Equity Trustees Fund Services has made three new appointments in its London and Dublin offices. - “The Fund Services division of our business has built a market leading proposition over two decades in independent fund governance,” says Harvey Kalman, Head of Global Fund Services at Equity Trustees. “It’s critical in maintaining our reputation for independent expertise and client service to appoint experienced members of staff that can continue to allow us to provide a market leading service to our clients and the investors in the funds for which we are responsible." - The new staff will report to Kevin Lavery, CEO (Ireland) and Chief Operating Officer (UK & Europe) of Equity Trustees Fund Services. They are: - Ronan Walsh, Investment & Portfolio Risk (Dublin) – With 20 years’ experience spanning Australia and Europe, Ronan joins the team to head up our Independent Investment and Portfolio Risk oversight function.With a proven track record in all areas of investments including fund risk, strategic asset allocation, asset management, portfolio construction, governance and foreign exchange markets. He has previously held roles including CIO at Crescent Wealth, GM of Investments at REST Industry Super, as well as roles with VicSuper, Russell Investments, Citigroup Global markets, MLC Investment Management and Lend Lease Investment Management. - James Ellison, Head of Operations (London) – James was formerly the Head of Fund Accounting Oversight at BMO Global Asset Management (EMEA) where he was responsible for more than 20 fund structures incorporating 175 sub-funds across UK, Luxembourg, Ireland, Cayman and Guernsey and AUM of around EUR40 billionn. Previously he held roles as fund controller at JP Morgan Asset Management and Goldman Sachs. David Ryan, Investment Oversight Manager (Dublin) – David joins Equity Trustees after three years with global custodian, fund administrator and asset servicing provider Société Générale Securities Services. Prior to that, David worked at leading asset servicing providers CACEIS and International Financial Data Services. - “Our newest team members each bring significant expertise to our European business,” says Lavery. “They each have exceptional backgrounds having in worked with major global asset managers and service providers and bring a deep understanding of the regulatory and operational environments from around the globe. We welcome them to Equity Trustees and congratulate them on their appointments.” Tags Moves & Appointments

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To some extent, the sheer pace of technology advancement makes it nigh-on impossible for any serious fund manager to completely overlook this option. After all, we live in a time where “AI”, “machine learning” and “alternative data” are thrown into conversation with great gusto, as managers seek to position themselves as being on point with market trends. Heaven forbid one may look out of vogue. - How one utilises these data sets, though, should be observed with the same focus as any other aspect of the trading process. Picking which alternative data to use is far from straightforward. It is also, arguably, more additive to discretionary managers than the higher frequency traders and quants who need to act on signals in short timeframes. - Most of the alt data sets are built on equity markets, given the enormity of publicly traded information. Applying them to futures markets, where trading on OTC market still dominates, is more challenging. - I spoke recently to the head of quant trading at a London-based fund platform, which supports a mix of both discretionary and quant fund managers. On condition of anonymity, he shares the following anecdote: ”I have heard about stellar data sets on UK oil reserves but the reality is, if someone really had found such a data set to premise the production or consumption of a commodity, they wouldn’t tell the marketplace about it. - “I think the real value of these data sets is still marginal.” - Speaking at last year’s ABN AMRO Amsterdam Investor Forum, Rani Piputri, Head of Automated Intelligence Investing, NNIP (a Netherlands-base investment manager), said that how one defines a good alternative data set depends on one’s investment process. “We’ve found some alternative data providers who can provide us with very good equity analyst estimates,” she said. - Alternative data is typically speaking, relatively slow. It tends to be related to company fundamentals and usually it is based on monthly corporate updates. There isn’t much alternative data in real time that can have an impact on price. Most alternative data sets are used as leading indicators ahead of big fundamental announcement such as corporate earnings. - For a short-term trader, monthly data does not necessarily offer much value in the search for alpha. But for discretionary managers with an active short book, alternative data sets have the potential to help a manager build an investment thesis around shorting a particular stock, ie using satellite imagery to determine car production in China, for example, or the number of cars in supermarkets or retail parks. - In some respects, picking the right data sets is a skill in and of itself, just like stock picking. The biggest quant shops on the street have the budgets to buy the best data available; and by default, the highest quality data. That’s not the case for the vast majority of the hedge fund firmament. - “The managers on our platform trade futures, they are short-term traders and they are modest in AUM. Combine those factors and that is why, for us there is no real use for alternative data sets,” remarks the quant manager. - He is quick to point out though, that he does see value in using them in the discretionary trading space, noting they can be additive when doing a deep dive into assessing a company’s true value: “A discretionary trader looking at aviation stocks might use an alt data set that provides information on employee satisfaction, or supply chain costs, to build long and short positions. - “We are at an age where technology is allowing us to aggregate data from the bottom up and apply statistical tools to improve our reasoning. It is a big shift.” - One manager who is actively utilising alternative data sets is New York-based Wavelength Capital Management, which focuses on factor-based fixed income analysis. Its co-founder, Mark Landis, tells me that one basic premise behind Wavelength’s investment process is that technology has commoditised many traditional data sets, thusmaking markets more efficient. The traditional, one-dimensional edge of older traditional money managers is harder and harder to identify and take advantage of. - “We absolutely utilise non-traditional data sets along with traditional,” says Landis. - “But remember, in fixed income which has historically been an OTC market, attaining proper historical data sets in such markets as credit, MBS etc., has been very difficult.We utilise both machine learning and deep learning (AI) to process historical, fundamental and non-traditional data.Advances in processing power have made it possible to identify patterns through filters with more depth than a simple chart of prices.” - I ask Landis about the quality versus quantity challenge faced by managers, and the issue of cost versus opportunity gained. - He responds: “One needs to know what to do with it. The volume of financial market data is enormous and growing daily. Deciphering signal from noise, as with all data sets,represents the key to unlocking opportunity and a true edge versus wasting money.” - He thinks that applying deep learning to the universe of big data offers the greatest investment potential. - Over the next few years, the 5G revolution is going to change our lives even more considerably than we’ve seen over the previous decade. It will unleash enormous processing power, allowing computers to crunch through slews of alternative data in near real-time. - The quant trader pauses when I suggest this and offers the following concluding remark: - “Before going to the millisecond, or something closer to real time, the next step should be to get right the quality and accuracy of data. There will be a big premium for those who can gather high quality, clean data to gain an edge in the market. - “I think managers will become more qualitative in how they use alt data sets in my opinion. Quantity is not the challenge … quality is.” Author Profile Tags Services Research & Analytics SHARE ARTICLE

Billionaire manager Glenn Dubin is retiring from running his hedge fund to focus on direct investing through his family office. Dubin, 62, is turning over management of the $1 billion Engineers Gate ... SHARE ARTICLE

Hedge fund steps up fight against Premier Oil's North Sea deal spree Evening Standard SHARE ARTICLE

PAYBACK'S A B*TCH You think your 2020 is off to a bad start? Try being a former Wells Fargo CEO... As if being the punchline of every fin-twit sh*t-post (ok, maybe Deutsche Bank and Nomura took some of the heat too) isn’t bad enough, two former execs are facing up to $59M in fines from the ... SHARE ARTICLE

24th Jan 2020 - 10:28am The Year of the Rat: China’s economy is strong but investors need to be on their guard Submitted 24/01/2020 - 10:28am - As China enters the Year of the Rat this Saturday (25 January), Jasmine Kang, Portfolio Manager at Comgest, an independent, international asset management group, believes that China’s growth has become more sustainable but that high-quality companies are still rare and strong stock selection is more important than ever … - “The rat might be a shrewd and unpopular creature in our culture but in China it stands for diligence, intelligence, energy, determination and achieving goals, so it is appropriate that it gives its name to a year in which China’s growth model is becoming more sustainable and its equity markets more transparent and open to foreign investors. “At least economically the gods have been kind to the country in recent years. The shift in the Chinese economy from credit and infrastructure-driven growth to innovation, services and consumer-oriented growth is almost complete and real incomes are growing steadily. The opening of the Shenzhen and Shanghai stock markets is proceeding at a rapid pace and China’s long-term potential as a financial centre is huge. Although the share of foreign investors in Chinese A shares is still low, foreign institutional investors’ access to the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock markets will continue to advance in the coming years, promoting capital inflows and professionalising the capital market. The improvement of transparency and ESG issues is still in its infancy, but more companies are already reporting in accordance with international standards. “Despite the positive changes in the general environment, China remains a challenging place for stock picking. High-quality companies still seem few and far between. In China it is particularly important for minority shareholders to be in the same boat as the company's decision-makers and managers. Governance structures are of crucial importance for the success of long-term oriented quality growth investors. Investors should have a diligent rat-like squint at potential investments to see if their growth is underpinned by strong and open governance structures. “Shandong Weigao Group Medical Polymer Co, Ltd is a prime example of how improvements in governance structure favour minority shareholders. The company has long been a strong brand in the market for medical consumables but its growth was below average for a long time. Equity investments were reserved for top management only and were not tradeable. Through the reform of the Chinese capital market, these shares have become tradeable and, thanks to employee participation programs, they have become an important instrument for long-term corporate management and a catalyst for accelerating growth. Earnings per share and the company share price have doubled over the past three years. “Despite being known for its high volatility, in the long term, the outlook for the Chinese equity market is positive. Over the past 12 months, the IT and healthcare-heavy 'China Shenzhen' index, with 36% value growth in USD terms, has been one of the best stock markets in the world and has even outperformed the Nasdaq. In the Year of the Rat, investors should keep a sense of proportion and not just chase after rising prices, but rather invest in quality over the long term and be patient to achieve an optimal risk-return profile for their Chinese investment.” Author Profile Tags Comment SHARE ARTICLE

eVestment: Investors Redeemed $100bn From Hedge Funds In 2019 AlphaWeek SHARE ARTICLE

Hedge Fund Questions Premier Oil's Plans Offshore Engineer SHARE ARTICLE

Billionaire Glenn Dubin — caught in a firestorm over his controversial ties to dead sex predator Jeffrey Epstein — said Friday he’s retiring from his hedge fund. The 62-year-old money manager — who, ... SHARE ARTICLE

Deutsche Bank and Singapore hedge fund double down on Indian shadow lender's debt The Business Times SHARE ARTICLE

“From the point of ignition to the final drive, the point of the journey is not to arrive.” - Neil Peart New clues are emerging on the nature and pace of change... Here's the setup: Unlikely and unexpected virtuosity often serves as the catalyst for a dynastic run of success. Moreover, legend has it, [...] SHARE ARTICLE

Hedge fund ESG activism helps managers drive change The Asset ESG SHARE ARTICLE

Hedge fund Asia Research and Capital Management (ARCM) on Friday raised fresh concerns over Premier Oil's plan to have its creditors vote on the planned acquisition of North Sea assets under a scheme ... SHARE ARTICLE

There is a high rate of failure among quant funds. These include smart beta, factor investing, statistical arbitrage, and CTAs. Such false positive strategies are a widespread industry problem. Since psychiatrists have long traded on the ability of the human mind to find an elaborate narrative in a random ink Read More SHARE ARTICLE

Mean variance optimization (MVO) is a simple, yet well-regarded asset allocation technique designed to create a portfolio that maximizes it’s expected level of return for a given level of standard deviation. Many institutions construct diversified portfolios using this simple technique, attempting to maximize their risk-adjusted returns. While popular with many Read More SHARE ARTICLE

Global pension funds now own $11.6trn in alternative investment interests according to new report SHARE ARTICLE

Bailey McCann, Opalesque New York: What will it take for blockchain and cryptocurrencies to expand? Delegates at the recent Opalesque Miami Roundtable suggest that the digital assets market needs a 'killer app ' that will usher in a new era of widespread use. To get there, however, more infrastruct... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

Laxman Pai, Opalesque Asia: Almost 60% of S P 500 companies hold assets at high risk from climate change, according to an S P Global presentation at the 2020 Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos. The findings revealed that in the S P 500 Index own physical assets across 68 countries ... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

Laxman Pai, Opalesque Asia: 2019 saw record private equity fundraising with mega PEs and tech-focused PEs attracting the lion's share of capital, said a study. Mega-funds dominated the PE space in 2019, pushing up fundraising to $301 billion for a 52% gain compared with 2018, said PWC in its quarte... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

Laxman Pai, Opalesque Asia: North America continued to attract the highest number of venture capital (VC) investments and funding during the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2019 though the region experienced a dip in investments. According to a report by GlobalData, North America experienced a decline in VC... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

Whale Rock launches long-only funds From Institutional Investor: Whale Rock Capital Management is the latest hedge fund firm to launch long-only funds. The Boston firm headed by Alex Sacerdote disclosed in a regulatory filing it has raised money for three related funds: Whale Rock Long Opportunitie... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

The SS C GlobeOp Forward Redemption Indicator for January 2020 measured 2.26%, down from 4.95% in December. "SS C GlobeOp's Forward Redemption Indicator for January 2020 was 2.26%, a favorable reading compared to the 2.70% reported a year ago, as well as compared to historical averages,&am... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

Boston Retirement earmarks $80m for private markets, $50m for real estate From PIonline.com: Boston Retirement System committed a total of $80 million to a private markets mandate and $50 million to three open-end value-added real estate funds. At its Dec. 18 board meeting, the board committed $8... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

Goldman says fast money all-in and stocks can go higher From AFR: A growing cohort on Wall Street frets a sharp reversal could soon hit this year's stock melt-up now that fast-money quants have ramped up their speculative bets. But the real money has the potential to grab the baton even if these sy... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

Renaissance Technologies founder names his son co-chairman From FT: Renaissance Technologies founder Jim Simons has named his son co-chairman of the quantitative hedge fund's board and added five new directors, as he steps up preparations to hand over the secretive $75bn manager to the next generat... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

Securities regulator of India bets on blockchain From Coin Telegraph: The Chairman of Security and Exchange Board of India(SEBI), Ajay Tyagi makes a bet on blockchain technology and urges exploration of the best possible usage of blockchain in securities markets. SEBI is the regulator of the India... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

From Institutional Investor: Asset managers are increasingly turned to mergers and acquisitions in an attempt to solve the problem of slowing growth and falling fees. In five years, PricewatehouseCoopers expects 20 percent of asset managers to be acquired or eliminated. In PwC's fourth quarter deal... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

Agencies to propose 'covered funds' revamp in Volcker Rule From American Banker: The Federal Reserve Board and Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. will meet next week to consider a proposal to simplify the "covered funds" portion of the Volcker Rule. Regulators in August finalized a ... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

From Barrons: All three major stock indexes hit record highs in 2019, which made it all the more challenging for active fund managers to beat the market. Among the biggest losers were quant funds-those run by computer algorithms analyzing large sets of data. Their underperformance will likely conti... Article link SHARE ARTICLE

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