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The Statistical Properties of Hedge Fund Index Returns

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Author Info

  • Chris Brooks

    ()
    (ICMA Centre, University of Reading)

  • Harry. M Kat

    ()
    (ICMA Centre, University of Reading)

Abstract

he monthly return distributions of many hedge fund indices exhibit highly unusual skewness and kurtosis properties as well as first-order serial correlation. This has important consequences for investors. We demonstrate that although hedge fund indices are highly attractive in mean-variance terms, this is much less the case when skewness, kurtosis and autocorrelation are taken into account. Sharpe Ratios will substantially overestimate the true risk-return performance of (portfolios containing) hedge funds. Similarly, mean-variance portfolio analysis will over-allocate to hedge funds and overestimate the attainable benefits from including hedge funds in an investment portfolio. We also find substantial differences between indices that aim to cover the same type of strategy. Investors’ perceptions of hedge fund performance and value added will therefore strongly depend on the indices used.

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File URL: http://www.icmacentre.ac.uk/pdf/discussion/DP2001-09.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Henley Business School, Reading University in its series ICMA Centre Discussion Papers in Finance with number icma-dp2001-09.

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Length: 33 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2001
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Journal of Alternative Investments 5:2, 26-44
Handle: RePEc:rdg:icmadp:icma-dp2001-09

Contact details of provider:
Postal: PO Box 218, Whiteknights, Reading, Berks, RG6 6AA
Phone: +44 (0) 118 378 8226
Fax: +44 (0) 118 975 0236
Web page: http://www.henley.reading.ac.uk/
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Related research

Keywords: Hedge fund; hedge fund index; skewness; kurtosis; autocorrelation; sharpe ratio; mean-variance analysis;

References

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  1. Geltner, David Michael, 1991. "Smoothing in Appraisal-Based Returns," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 327-45, September.
  2. David M. Geltner, 1993. "Estimating Market Values from Appraised Values without Assuming an Efficient Market," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 8(3), pages 325-346.
  3. Scott, Robert C & Horvath, Philip A, 1980. " On the Direction of Preference for Moments of Higher Order Than the Variance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 35(4), pages 915-19, September.
  4. Fung, William & Hsieh, David A., 2000. "Performance Characteristics of Hedge Funds and Commodity Funds: Natural vs. Spurious Biases," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 35(03), pages 291-307, September.
  5. Liang, Bing, 2000. "Hedge Funds: The Living and the Dead," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 35(03), pages 309-326, September.
  6. William F. Sharpe, 1965. "Mutual Fund Performance," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 39, pages 119.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Ribeiro, Mafalda & Santos, C. Machado, 2009. "Hedge funds strategies -are they consistent?," Working Papers 10/2009, Universidade Portucalense, Centro de Investigação em Gestão e Economia (CIGE).
  2. Harry. M Kat, 2002. "The Dangers of Using Correlation to Measure Dependence," ICMA Centre Discussion Papers in Finance icma-dp2002-23, Henley Business School, Reading University.
  3. Sabrina Khanniche, 2009. "Evaluation of Hedge Fund Returns Value at Risk Using GARCH Models," EconomiX Working Papers 2009-46, University of Paris West - Nanterre la Défense, EconomiX.
  4. Dimson, E. & Spaenjers, C., 2009. "Ex-Post: The Investment Performance of Collectible Stamps," Discussion Paper 2009-64, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  5. Chris Brooks & Alešs Černý & Joëlle Miffre, 2012. "Optimal hedging with higher moments," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 32(10), pages 909-944, October.
  6. ABEDALFATTAH Zuhair Al-Abedallat & FARIS Nasif AL- Shubiri, 2013. "Analysis The Determinants Of Credit Risk In Jordanian Banking: An Empirical Study," Management Research and Practice, Research Centre in Public Administration and Public Services, Bucharest, Romania, vol. 5(3), pages 21-31, September.
  7. Jacqueline Henn-Overbeck & Iwan Meier, 2005. "Performance Analysis of Hedge Fonds," Working papers 2005/06, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
  8. Gaurav Amin & Harry. M Kat, 2002. "Who Should Buy Hedge Funds? The effect of including Hedge Funds in Portfolios of Stocks and Bonds," ICMA Centre Discussion Papers in Finance icma-dp2002-06, Henley Business School, Reading University.
  9. Albert Banal-Estañol & Marco Ottaviani & Andrew Winton, 2013. "The Flip Side of Financial Synergies: Coinsurance Versus Risk Contamination," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 26(12), pages 3142-3181.
  10. Huyen Nguyen-Thi-Thanh & Georges Gallais-Hamonno & Thi H.V. Hoang, 2008. "Faut-il corriger les rentabilités des hedge funds?," Post-Print halshs-00106400, HAL.
  11. Jacques Pezier & Anthony White, 2006. "The Relative Merits of Investable Hedge Fund Indices and of Funds of Hedge Funds in Optimal Passive Portfolios," ICMA Centre Discussion Papers in Finance icma-dp2006-10, Henley Business School, Reading University.
  12. Jacques Pézier, 2007. "Maximum Certain Equivalent Excess Returns and Equivalent Preference Criteria Part I - Theory," ICMA Centre Discussion Papers in Finance icma-dp2008-05, Henley Business School, Reading University, revised Dec 2008.
  13. Gaurav Amin & Harry. M Kat, 2002. "Stocks, Bond and Hedge Funds: Not a Free Lunch," ICMA Centre Discussion Papers in Finance icma-dp2002-11, Henley Business School, Reading University.
  14. Wolfgang Bessler & Wolfgang Drobetz & Jacqueline Henn-Overbeck, 2005. "Hedge Funds: Die „Königsdisziplin“ der Kapitalanlage," Working papers 2005/04, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
  15. Nicholas Chan & Mila Getmansky & Shane M. Haas & Andrew W. Lo, 2005. "Systemic Risk and Hedge Funds," NBER Working Papers 11200, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    • Nicholas Chan & Mila Getmansky & Shane M. Haas & Andrew W. Lo, 2007. "Systemic Risk and Hedge Funds," NBER Chapters, in: The Risks of Financial Institutions, pages 235-338 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Spaenjers, C., 2011. "Essays in alternative investments," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-4944288, Tilburg University.
  17. Harry. M Kat & Sa Lu, 2002. "An Excursion into the Statistical Properties of Hedge Funds," ICMA Centre Discussion Papers in Finance icma-dp2002-12, Henley Business School, Reading University.
  18. Georges Gallais-Hamonno & Huyen Nguyen-Thi-Thanh, 2007. "The necessity to correct hedge fund returns: empirical evidence and correction method," Working Papers halshs-00184470, HAL.
  19. Gaurav Amin & Harry. M Kat, 2002. "Portfolios of Hedge Funds What Investors Really Invest In," ICMA Centre Discussion Papers in Finance icma-dp2002-07, Henley Business School, Reading University.

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