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James Williams, news editor, Hedgeweek

Italy’s assets in alternative UCITS at EUR3.5billion… Alternative UCITS return 1.03 per cent in January…

Morgan Stanley this week announced the launch of a new fund on its dedicated UCITS platform, FundLogic Alternatives plc that gives investors exposure to Winton Capital Management’s Diversified Program.

The fund is the third in a series of four CTA strategies to be made available in a UCITS format through Morgan Stanley’s partnership with Equinox Fund Management LLC (“Equinox”), a US-based multi-manager, specializing in constructing portfolios comprised of multiple Commodity Trading Advisor (“CTA”) programs. 

“We are proud to provide UCITS investors with access to the Winton Diversified Program, established in 1997 by David Harding,” said Alvise Munari, Managing Director and Global Head of Equity Derivatives, Sales and Financial Engineering at Morgan Stanley. Munari added: “Winton is one of the world’s leaders in systematic investment management with over USD25bn of assets under management.
“David Harding’s track record of 25 years has been built on his scientific approach and sustained by a research team of over 100 and best in class practices. Winton’s investment process can be described as quantitative, systematic and research-driven. The investment universe mainly consists of futures contracts linked to stock indices, bonds, short-term interest rates, currencies, precious and base metals, grains, livestock, energy, and agricultural products.”
Said Harding: “We are excited to work with Morgan Stanley and Equinox to provide their UCITS investors with exposure through Equinox to our trading strategy. Morgan Stanley offers investors extensive operational and risk management experience as well as the broad distribution network provided by its platform.”
Michel Serieyssol, Managing Director at Equinox, commented: “We are delighted by the progress that our partner, Morgan Stanley, has made in providing international investors with access to best-in-class CTA strategies through state-of-the-art UCITS vehicles. Winton has been a longstanding friend of our firm and we are so pleased that its program is the latest addition to the FundLogic Alternatives Platform.”
Alternative UCITS funds got off to a positive start for 2013 with the UCITS Alternative Index Global gaining 1.03 per cent in January. Encouragingly, nine out of the 11 strategies comprising the Index made positive gains, the best of which was the UAI Long/Short Equity, up 1.98 per cent. A fraction behind was the UAI CTA, up 1.96 per cent – its third consecutively monthly gain – while UAI Emerging Markets and UAI Multi-Strategy gained 1.69 per cent and 1.28 per cent respectively. The two strategies to get off to a poor start for 2013 were the UAI Volatility, down -1.41 per cent, and the UAI Event-Driven, down -0.15 per cent. By comparison a number of single strategy indices outperformed their equivalent benchmarks. The UAIX CTA was the top performer, returning 2.63 per cent, while the UAIX Long/Short Equity returned 2.13 per cent.

Italy’s alternative UCITS industry now manages EUR3.5billion in assets with 20 asset management companies managing 38 single manager products and nine funds of alternative UCITS funds reported InvestmentEurope this week, citing data from MondoAlternative, an Italian provider of financial information on alternative investments. The biggest single manager fund with EUR325million in AUM is Kairos International Sicav Selection, a long/short equity strategy, followed by PRIMAstrategia Europa Alto Potenziale, another LSE fund with EUR221million in AUM, and Kairos International Sicav Dynamic, a EUR200million macro strategy. In its research, MondoAlternative estimates that Italian investors hold more than EUR10billion in total assets within the alternative UCITS industry with institutional investors accounting for 52.7 per cent of allocated capital.   

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