2008-06-09wsj.com

The 97 hedge funds that focus on energy investments were up an average of almost 3% through May, after climbing 16% last year, according to estimates of HedgeFund.net, which tracks fund performance. By contrast, prices of oil-futures contracts are up more than 40% in 2008. And the Standard & Poor's Global Energy Sector Index Fund, an exchange-traded fund that tracks shares of energy companies, was up 8.5% through May. Only about a third of the 97 funds are on track to beat that ETF this year. It is unclear how the funds have fared this month, with oil prices up 9% in June.

...

Hedge funds mightn't be as responsible for the surge in energy prices as some suggest, but that isn't to say speculators haven't pocketed gains and helped drive up prices. Two funds run by oilman Boone Pickens are up sharply, despite a bet against natural gas earlier this year.

...

Meanwhile, many so-called commodity-trading advisers, close cousins of hedge funds that focus on commodity futures contracts rather than shares, have done quite well. Man Group PLC's AHL Diversified PLC fund is up about 20% this year, thanks in part to energy investments.

Interesting.


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