Equity strategies lead Van Hedge Fund Index growth

The strategies, 'aggressive growth', 'opportunistic' and 'value', returned 2.6%, 2.5% and 1.9% respectively, net of fees, according to Van Hedge Fund Advisors International. Overall, the index gained 0.9% last month, and 9.0% return for the year-to-date.

The July return is based on nearly 850 hedge funds.

The global index, excluding funds of funds, posted a 1.0% gain net of fees, bringing its year-to-date gain to 9.6%, indicating that funds of funds are slightly lagging single-manager hedge funds this year.

But for the year-to-date 2003, emerging markets funds have performed best, producing a 17.5% net return, followed by aggressive and distressed securities with year-to-date returns of 16.5% and 15.3% respectively. The emerging markets growth is attributed to the hefty gains among stocks in countries such as Brazil and Russia.

Short selling was the poorest performer, recording losses for both July (-3.4%) and the year-to-date (-14.8%).

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