The US Federal Reserve cut official interest rates at a pace not seen for almost 25 years as US banks grappled with the meltdown of the subprime mortgage market. Equities fell in this environment almost everywhere. As equities crumbled, commodity prices soared. Oil prices smashed through the psychological $100 level. Any of these events could be regarded as a highlight in their own right. Together they have served up a timely lesson for the still young hedge fund industry. Flows into hedge funds

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