Multi-Asset Demand Drives Institutional Business
To save the global economy, central bankers have played the free money melody, entrancing asset managers and asset owners such as sovereign wealth funds and public pensions. With probable shifts in key interest rates, institutional investors are re-examining new strategies and solutions. One of these solutions is multi-asset investing. For example, Latin American pension funds and afores admit their high exposure to domestic markets, some view multi-asset strategies as a liquid alternative to gain exposure to international markets and varying asset classes. Institutional money managers of all stripes are hiring multi-asset operators, salespeople and executives en masse, cashing in on the demand for multi-asset strategies. Asset managers are hiring professionals with deep-rooted client connections from competitors, with experience running multi-asset portfolios and individuals with clear communication skills. In September 2014, Pictet Asset Management made moves into the multi-asset world by hiring Percival Stanion, Andrew Cole and Shaniel Ramjee from Baring Asset Management. The key man departure effect was devastating; Baring Asset Management’s flagship multi-asset fund experienced outflows of £5.5 billion (US$ 8.9 billion) in a time span of 7 weeks after Stanion announced his exit. Insight Investment, a unit of BNY Mellon, lured Victoria May away from JPMorgan Asset Management where she was a managing director in the global multi-asset team – parting a career at the firm starting in 1999. The skill of hiring a multi-asset manager is quite high, typical of a hedge fund manager. Furthermore, multi-asset operators are tasked with the art of modifying asset class weights to produce returns within defined risk parameters.
Pensions can circumvent this by moving multi-asset strategies into the absolute return silo.
A good number of institutional investors feel hornswoggled by asset managers, growing tired of beating benchmarks, but losing money. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]
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