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Covering ten asset classes and seven investor types, the Global Alternatives Survey, which shows that of the top 100 alternative investment managers, real estate managers have the largest share of assets (34 per cent and over $1.2 trillion), followed by hedge funds (21 per cent and $755 billion), private equity fund managers (18 per cent and $640 billion), private equity funds of funds (PEFoFs) (12 per cent and $420 billion), funds of hedge funds (FoHFs) (six per cent and $222 billion), infrastructure (five per cent) and illiquid credit (five per cent).
Real estate managers continue to have the largest share of pension fund assets with 40 per cent, followed by PEFoFs (20 per cent), hedge funds (10 per cent), private equity (nine per cent), infrastructure (eight per cent), FoHFs (seven per cent) and illiquid credit (four per cent).
Real estate managers continue to have the largest share of this with 52 per cent, followed by PEFoFs (23 per cent), Infrastructure (11 per cent), FoHFs (11 per cent) and commodities (three per cent).
Data from the wider survey shows that at the end of 2011 total assets managed by top 50 PEFoFs, FoHFs and real estate managers were $444bn, $411bn and $1.2 trillion respectively.
"Based on returns achieved by FOHFs rated by S&P Fund Services, we estimate that returns in the second quarter have been around five per cent, with six per cent achieved over the year to date," said S&P Fund Services lead analyst Randal Goldsmith, who explained that across the underlying hedge fund strategies each individual strategy delivered a positive return in May apart from short biased.
FOHFs were slow to catch the turn in March after reducing net and gross exposures to historically low levels.
"We think the primary reason for this is investor disappointment over the management of portfolio liquidity by hedge funds and FOHFs," said Goldsmith.
An analysis of the top 100 alternatives managers shows that real estate managers dominate, accounting for around 58 per cent of assets (down from 62 per cent in 2007), followed by PEFoF, FoHF, infrastructure and commodities; they also dominate the top ten ranking with eight managers in that list.
Blackstone Alternative Asset Management manages the largest proportion of FoHF assets on behalf of pension funds, with a total of $13.5 billion.
Data from the wider survey shows that at the end of 2008, the top 50 real estate managers, fund of hedge funds (FoHFs) and private equity fund of funds (PEFoFs) managed $485 billion ($512 billion in 2007), $123 billion ($146 billion in 2007) and $177 billion ($139 billion in 2007) respectively.