Fixed income leads in first quarter

Authored by Hedge News Africa

The HedgeNews Africa South African Single-Manager Composite added a median 0.98% in March, following its gain of 1.6% in February, to record a 2.71% return for the first quarter. The HedgeNews Africa Single-Manager Composite, which includes the performance of Africa-focused portfolios, added 1.09% over the quarter, including 0.64% in March.

By comparison, the FTSE/JSE All Share Index added 1.83% in March and 4.29% for the quarter, while the South African All Bond Index gained 1.79% for the month (0.89% for the quarter) and the return on cash in South Africa was 0.44% (1.32% for the quarter). The MSCI World Index ended the quarter 0.77% higher, after dipping 0.09% in March, while the MSCI Emerging Markets Index rose 2.92% for the month (down 0.8% for the quarter).

Fixed income was the best-performing strategy over the first quarter, with the HedgeNews Africa Fixed Income Index gaining a median 3.37%, including 1.79% in March. The Matrix Fixed Income Fund had a strong quarter, adding 15.45%, some distance ahead of the X-Chequer Freestone Fund and the Validus Fixed Income Fund, which gained 8.22% and 7.42% respectively. The Sanlam Fixed Income Arbitrage Fund added 4.74% for the quarter followed by the Abax Fixed Interest Fund with a return of 4.46%.

The Validus Fixed Income Fund was the top performer in March, gaining 3.95%, while the Proton Fund added 3.72% and the AcuityOne Hedge Fund rose 3.32%. Matrix Fixed Income gained 3.28%, while the Abax Fixed Interest Fund returned 2.23%.

South African long/short equity funds added a median 1.44% in March to end the quarter 3.03% higher. Over three months, the category is led by the Laurium Aggressive Long/Short Fund, which added 8.81%, followed by the Fairtree Assegai Long Short Equity Fund, with a return of 7.97%, and the X-Chequer Flexible Long/Short Fund, which gained 5.19%. The Coronation Presidio Fund gained 5.01%, the Tower Fund rose 4.93% and the Absolute Alpha Fund gained 4.92%.

The Coronation Presidio Fund led the way in March with a gain of 3.79%, with the Rock Capital Top 20 Equity Fund and the Fairtree Assegai Long Short Equity Fund adding 3.64% and 3.15% respectively. The X-Chequer Flexible Long/Short Fund also performed well, adding 3.07%.

Amongst South Africa market neutral and quantitative funds, the X-Chequer Market Neutral Fund ended the quarter ahead of its peers with a 6.99% return. The Laurium Market Neutral Fund (4.54%) and Cognitio Fund (4.02%) were also strong performers, while the Investec Asset Management Active Quants Hedge Fund and G3 Tlou Market Neutral Fund added 2.75% and 2% respectively. The HedgeNews Africa Market Neutral and Quantitative Index added 0.8% for the month and 2.11% for the quarter.

Performance in March was led by the X-Chequer Market Neutral Fund with a return of 3.41%, followed by the Investec Asset Management Active Quants Hedge Fund and the Cognitio Hedge Fund with 2.87% and 2.18% respectively. The X-Chequer Equity Hedge Fund added 1.7% for the month.

The HedgeNews Africa Multi-Strategy Index added 0.86% in March to end the quarter 2.17% higher. Three funds added in excess of 10% for the quarter, namely the Alternative Real Estate Monthly Income Fund (10.57%), Matrix Multi-Strategy Fund (10.44%) and AG Capital’s Prosperitas Fund (10.37%). The Fairtree Wild Fig Multi Asset Class Fund also had a good quarter, adding 7.98%.

The Alternative Real Estate Monthly Income Fund was also the top-performer for the month, adding 7.32%. The Prosperitas Fund gained a solid 5.03% in March, followed by the High Street Hedge Fund and the Fairtree Wild Fig Multi Asset Class Fund, which gained a respective 3.6% and 3%. Matrix Multi-Strategy gained 2.92% and the Kaizen Strategic Opportunities Fund added 2.17%.

Amongst credit funds, the Creditsmith Specialised Opportunities Fund added 2.97% for the quarter, while the Creditsmith Enhanced Yield Fund gained 2.89% and the Chrysalis Credit Arbitrage Fund returned 2.46%.

Amongst commodities funds, the Polar Star Agricultural Commodities Fund added 7.72% for the first three months, while the Fairtree African Blackwood Commodity Partnership gained 2.01% and the Cassandra Commodities Hedge Fund returned 1.2%.

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