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What drives cash flow based European private equity returns? Fund inflows, skilled GPs and/or risk?

  • Kaserer, Christoph
  • Diller, Christian

This paper analyzes the determinants of returns generated by European private equity funds. It starts from the presumption that this asset class is characterized by illiquidity, stickiness and segmentation. As a consequence, Gompers and Lerner (2000) have shown that venture deal valuations are driven by overall fund inflows into the industry giving way to the so called 'money chasing deals' phenomenon. It is the aim of this paper to document that this phenomenon also explains a significant part of variation in private equity funds' returns. This is especially true for venture funds, as they are more affected by illiquidity and segmentation than buy-out funds. Actually, the paper presents a WLS-regression model that is able to explain up to 47% of variation in funds' returns. Apart from the importance of fund flows we can also show that market sentiment, the GPs' skills as well as the idiosyncratic risk of a fund have a significant impact on its returns. Moreover, they seem to be unrelated to stock market returns and negatively correlated with the development of the economy as a whole. According to a bootstrapping inference the results seem to be quite stable.

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Paper provided by Center for Entrepreneurial and Financial Studies (CEFS), Technische Universität München in its series CEFS Working Paper Series with number 2004-02.

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Date of creation: 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:zbw:cefswp:200402
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  1. Cornelli, Francesca & Goldreich, David & Ljungqvist, Alexander P., 2004. "Investor Sentiment and Pre-Issue Markets," CEPR Discussion Papers 4448, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Deaves, Richard, 2004. "Data-conditioning biases, performance, persistence and flows: The case of Canadian equity funds," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 673-694, March.
  3. Inderst, Roman & Muller, Holger M., 2004. "The effect of capital market characteristics on the value of start-up firms," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 319-356, May.
  4. Alexander Ljungqvist & Matthew Richardson, 2003. "The cash flow, return and risk characteristics of private equity," NBER Working Papers 9454, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Steven Kaplan & Antoinette Schoar, 2003. "Private Equity Performance: Returns, Persistence and Capital," NBER Working Papers 9807, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Getmansky, Mila & Lo, Andrew W. & Makarov, Igor, 2004. "An econometric model of serial correlation and illiquidity in hedge fund returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(3), pages 529-609, December.
  7. Goetzmann, William N. & Ingersoll, Jonathan & Ivković, Zoran, 2000. "Monthly Measurement of Daily Timers," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 35(03), pages 257-290, September.
  8. James G. MacKinnon, 2002. "Bootstrap inference in econometrics," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 35(4), pages 615-645, November.
  9. Madura, Jeff & Bers, Martina K., 2002. "The performance persistence of foreign closed-end funds," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(4), pages 263-285.
  10. Crystal Yan Lin & Kenneth Yung, 2004. "Real Estate Mutual Funds: Performance and Persistence," Journal of Real Estate Research, American Real Estate Society, vol. 26(1), pages 69-94.
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