The global hedge fund industry marked record inflows in 2003, taking in an estimated $60 billion in net assets. Of that total, the fourth quarter took in $15 billion in net assets, according to preliminary estimates by TASS Research.
“Institutional investors were the main contributors to the growth in alternative investment assets during 2003,” Robert Schulman, Co-CEO of Tremont Capital Management, Inc said in a news release. “They have adopted hedge funds as a viable asset class.”
With assets flowing into hedge funds, it is of little surprise that TASS also found managers continued to launch new funds last year while fund closures decreased by 4% over 2002. TASS Research estimates that there are currently 6,700 hedge funds of which 1,700 are funds of hedge funds. Last year, the estimate was between 5,000 and 6,000 funds of which 1,250 were funds of hedge funds.
In fact, 2003 was so good to hedge funds, TASS Research also announced an alteration to its global hedge fund industry asset estimates. Effective early this year, the firm showed an increase of $125 billion and indicated that global hedge fund assets stood between $725 and $750 billion.