Hedge Funds

StanChart unit avoids Islamic hedge funds

Standard Chartered Bank sees opportunities in Islamic derivative products but is steering clear of hedge funds, another grey area of Shariah-compliant finance, the head of its Saadiq unit said.

StanChart Saadiq avoids Islamic hedge funds

Standard Chartered Bank sees opportunities in Islamic derivatives products but is steering clear of hedge funds, another grey area of sharia-compliant finance, the head of its Saadiq unit said.

Dubai Opens Its Shariah Hedge Fund to Investors

Dubai is opening up its inaugural hedge fund to investors after an index-beating debut. The Middle East emirate's first fund of funds, which was launched at the beginning of 2009, beat comparable indexes by posting a 41% return last year. The fund, up slightly more than 1% through March 28, is still outperforming benchmarks this year.

Islamic Wealth Management Report published by Bank Sarasin

Press Release

The report provides investors with an in-depth overview of the various asset classes in Islamic wealth management along with a synopsis of the market scenario during the past 18 months. The report also explores the concept of estate and succession planning, which Sarasin believes is insufficiently addressed in the Islamic finance industry and is a key element of Sarasin’s Islamic wealth management offering. Finally, the report provides an insight into the bank’s economic outlook for 2010.

The key issues and challenges addressed in the report are:

  • how Sharia screening reduced the downside in volatile markets and how it affects the finance industry and investors,
  • the behaviour of direct real estate investments in comparison with real estate funds and Sharia-compliant real estate investment trusts,
  • the income-related role of Sukuk within Islamic balanced portfolios and the probability of defaults,
  • a comparison between various Islamic investment funds ranging from income-oriented to commodity, real estate and equity funds,
  • the size and future of the Islamic private equity and venture capital industry,

Launch of International Islamic Finance Journal from Dubai

Press Release

Today sees the launch of a new Journal on Islamic finance from dedicated Islamic finance media entity Yasaar Media.

The Journal, called So Far – the Journal of Strategic Thinking in Islamic Finance, is written and edited by members of an Islamic finance Think Tank and is modelled on traditional academic journals. The difference with So Far is that the members of the Think Tank are predominantly practitioners rather than academics.
Member of the Think Tank are drawn from the ranks of committed Islamic finance professionals around the world and range from the Gulf and the Far East to the USA and Europe.

Each issue of So Far is dedicated to a single topic of core importance to the Islamic finance industry – and the launch issue looks at the thorny issue of the problems facing the Sukuk market. Unlike many other journals So Far is distributed free in PDF format and is available from a variety of sources including Yasaar Media thus guaranteeing maximum readership and exposure.

Sharia-Compliant Hedge Fund Launched in USA

Palisades Park Capital started a multi-strategy hedge fund in November. Justin Doff and Omar Haroon manage the fund. The fund is a computer-based long-short equity strategy.

Update 12.2.2010: Palisades Park Capital informed IslamicFinance.de that the vehicle has been closed and new subscriptions can no longer be done.

Gassner's picture

Calling Islamic financial institutions to become member of the United Nations Finance Initiative

IslamicFinance.de is calling Islamic financial institutions to become member of the UNEP Finance Inititiave to learn and contribute to international best practice in ethical and faith based finance:

"UNEP FI is a global partnership between UNEP and the financial sector. Over 180 institutions, including banks, insurers and fund managers, work with UNEP to understand the impacts of environmental and social considerations on financial performance."

membership information package:
http://www.unepfi.org/fileadmin/forms/MembershipInformationPack.pdf

Islamic Finance in North America

Yasaar media published a new report called Islamic Finance in North America 2009 for free download, which is co-published by Codexa Capital, UM Financial Group, King & Spalding, and Doha Islamic.

According to the report Islamic finance in North America has developed along two quite separate paths:

  • The first path focuses on retail Islamic finance and centres mostly on home financing products and credit cards.
  • The second path involves a number of high profile GCC-based Islamic investment banks and their deployment of hundreds of millions of dollars in private equity and real estate developments in North America.

Read the full report for free at the link below.

Free Report: Islamic Investment Banking

Yasaar Media published a report about Islamic Investment Banking for free download, with the co-publishers Unicorn Investment Bank, Doha Islamic covering data and principles regarding Private Equity, Venture Capital, syndicated lending, real estate, asset management, fund manageement, liquidity management, treasury, trade finance and capital markets in an Islamic context.

The new power brokers: How oil, Asia, hedge funds, and private equity are faring in the financial crisis

A new McKinsey Report is released reviewing the performance of the so-called "new power brokers" being sovereign wealth funds, private equity and hedge funds during the financial crisis.

The power brokers' collective performance in the financial crisis, though better than the sharp declines in wealth of most institutional investors, masks an important shift: Asian sovereign and petrodollar investors emerged as more influential than ever, while hedge funds and private equity saw their previously rapid growth interrupted.

In a 2007 report, MGI labeled these four groups of investors the “new power brokers” because they had gained enough wealth and clout to influence global financial markets. MGI revisited the power brokers to examine how their fortunes diverged over the during the financial crisis that unfolded in 2008 and projects where they may go from here, using a scenario approach.

The full report can be downloaded for free after registration:

Olivant writes down Amiri Capital stake

Olivant Investments has written down the entire value of its 30 % stake in Amiri Capital, a company offering a Sharia compliant Hedge fund platform.

Al Safi platform considers to launche private equity fund

The hedge fund platform Al Safi set up by Barclays Capital is planning Private Equity funds, reported Pratima Desai and Cecilia Valente on Reuters.

Bursa Malaysia Readies Islamic Short-Selling System

Bursa Malaysia’s regulated platform has not finalised the precise structure yet. But according to Bursa Malaysia CEO Yusli Mohamed Yusoff Short-selling is perceived as an essential ingredient for capital markets to perform efficiently.

Amiri Capital works with NewEdge for Islamic Hedge Fund Prime Brokerage needs

Cecilia Valente reported on 9 March on Reuters that Amiri Capital, the Islamic asset manager backed by investment firm Olivant, has teamed up with broker Newedge to launch an Islamic fund of long/short hedge funds to be marketed in the Middle East. The Amiri Equity Alternative Strategies Fund (AEAS) will operate under the same Sharia-compliant structure agreed with original prime broker Lehman Brothers to replicate short selling, which involves profiting as a stock price falls.

Amiri co-founder Richard Ellis told Reuters that Gulf-based investors have pledged assets to the fund of funds but investments will be made when the market shows signs of improvement. Philippe Teilhard de Chardin, global head of prime brokerage at Newedge, told Reuters that the market segment is small but developing.

Dubai launches Islamic commodity hedge fund index

Reuters reported on 7 January that the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre Authority (DMCC) and Shariah Capital launched an index tracking the performance of Islamic hedge funds investing in commodities.The index performance will be calculated and reported by Thomson Reuters (TRI.TO). The index is based on four hedge funds, part of the DSAM Kauthar Commodity Fund and investing in gold, energy, natural resources and mining. Each fund has received start capital of $50 million from the DMCC.

Islamic Commodity Investments

Devon Maylie reported on 5 January in Barron`s magazine, that commodity-focused companies and hedge funds are introducing special products that comply with Islamic law, either equity based or as direct exposure to commodities. Ian MacDonald, executive director for gold and precious metals at Dubai Multi Commodities Center is cited to claim that there are not enough effort spent on Sharia compliant commodity products so far. The DMCC is seed financing with USD 50 mn each a range of commodity oriented equity funds managed by BlackRock Capital Management, Tocqueville Asset Management, Zweig-DiMenna International Managers and Lucas Capital Management on its platform in partnership with US based Shariah Capital. London-based ETF Securities last year launched an exchange-traded fund for precious metals that is being marketed to Sharia investors. The World Gold Council is also partnering with DMCC to launch a similar product in March.

Responsible Investing Guidelines Include Shari'ah Law and Prohibited Nations

Northern Trust announced that it has enhanced its investment compliance monitoring capabilities for institutional asset servicing and wealth management clients globally, by expanding the range of environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors monitored by Northern Trust Compliance Analyst® to help clients meet responsible investing goals.

Compliance Analyst is a customizable, Web-based tool that alerts investors when portfolios are nearing or have breached established limits in a client's investment policy. In addition to corporate governance rankings and the 10 socially responsible investment restrictions currently available on Compliance Analyst, Northern Trust has extended its agreement with RiskMetrics Group to offer additional screening capabilities that cover the following issues:

Prohibited Nations according to US legislation or government, Shari'ah Law, Landmines and Cluster Bombs, Animal Testing/Welfare

For more information, visit http://www.northerntrust.com.

Source: Northern Trust, http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/080318/aqtu043.html?.v=54

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