Quantedge Global Fund marches ahead with 24% returns

Quantedge Global Fund returned 24 per cent this year to the end of March as most of its peers tumbled, helping it to rebound from last year's loss.

The Singapore-based fund, which uses quantitative models and invests globally, returned 12.2 per cent in March after gaining 3.8 per cent in January and 6.6 per cent in February, according to a newsletter obtained by Bloomberg News.

The returns more than offset the 18.3 per cent loss of last year. Quantedge had assets of US$1.16 billion (S$1.57 billion) at end-March, up from the US$3 million it started with in October 2006.

Quantedge's year-to-date return stands out against a backdrop of losses in the industry, as hedge funds globally have fallen 0.43 per cent so far this year, according to data provider Eurekahedge.

Concerns about a slowdown in China and sliding commodity prices weighed on global hedge funds in the first two months of the year.

Global markets rebounded in March, helping the Eurekahedge Hedge Fund Index climb 1.2 per cent last month.

"Quantedge Global Fund's returns were positive across all four major asset classes, adding up to our first double-digit monthly return for the year," the firm wrote in its newsletter, referring to its March gain without elaborating on specific positions.

"Strong gains from our equities and currencies positions made up the bulk of profits, with bonds and commodities icing the cake." Meeshell Koh, a spokesman for Quantedge, declined to comment on the newsletter.

Other funds using computer models have also gained this year, with the Japanese GCI Systematic Macro Fund up 19 per cent in January and February, and the Aspect Diversified Fund up 5.2 per cent in the first two months of the year.

Quantedge Global Fund was founded by former reinsurance pricing actuary Leow Kah Shin and Chua Choong Tze, who had previously taught a course in portfolio management at Singapore Management University.

The fund gained 29.4 per cent in 2014, and has returned an annualised 26 per cent since inception, according to the newsletter. A 15.9 per cent loss in August contributed to the total annual decline last year, the second in its history after a 22.6 per cent loss in 2008, the firm said in the newsletter.

BLOOMBERG

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 07, 2016, with the headline 'Quantedge Global Fund marches ahead with 24% returns'. Print Edition | Subscribe