Hedge fund bigwigs prepare for Monaco Summit

Local Monte Carlo businesses are frantically preparing for the arrival of this year’s GAIM conference delegates.  The two-day conference is being held at Le Meridian Beach Plaza, and will begin tomorrow morning.

Many high profile hedge fund managers from Louis Bacon‘s Moore Capital, Carl Icahn’s Icahn Enterprises, and Daniel Loeb’s  Third Point  as well as numerous others will be arriving today in anticipation of serious talks about the world’s economic crisis.

It is inevitable that the Eurozone crisis will be high on the agenda, as many fund managers have expressed concern over growth potential, especially as all are striving to return to the pre-credit crunch peak of 2007.

Mark Wightman, head of strategy for the Asia-Pacific region at specialist technology group SunGard, said: “A number of people I’ve spoken to have said it’s very hard to make money right now. The market is not acting rationally with [all of] the possible political interventions and many funds are struggling to raise assets.”

However, there is hope. The news of Greece’s recent election result should potentially mark the beginning of a new era of stability for Greece’s position within the Eurozone.  New Democracy leader Mr Samaras is confident about forming a working coalition with a “general consensus” among the Greek people. With no immediate signs of the country leaving the Eurozone, the financiers in Monte Carlo can possibly breathe a sigh of relief for further repercussions on the world market.

Fund growth strategy as the world heads into Q2 will be the main point of discussion at this year’s conference, as it is imperative funds start winning new business and avoiding another volatile period of uncertainty.  Many investors are still nervous about launching a new fund or increasing their existing investments, a stark contrast to 2007 when many funds were having to turn new investors away. Hedge fund research reported a loss of 5.3% from last year’s fund, which was to be expected in the midst of the current Euro crisis.

Despite concerns , however, the industry is still worth over $2 trillion and the current focus on growth and recovery should boost the sector. , On average, funds are up by 1.52% as of 13th June; although a far cry from the days of 2007, it is a welcome increase following two out of the last four years’ significant losses.

Executives such as PAAMCO chief executive Jane Buchan, Centaurus chairman Bernard Oppetit and Nicholas Botta (chief financial officer of activist fund Pershing Square) will debate how the industry can “reinvent” itself and attract investor cash again.

Presenting their best ideas at a series of investor roundtables, managers will get the chance to discuss “Tail Risk” strategies – designed to mitigate a blow-up – as well as how to trade volatile assets, control global macro investments and handle distressed debt investing.