Winton, Cantab Slump in August Amid Global Market Rout

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Winton Capital Management and Cantab Capital Partners, two U.K. computer-driven hedge funds, posted losses last month as global markets were rattled by concerns that China’s economy is faltering.

Winton lost an estimated 4.3 percent in August in its $11.8 billion Winton Futures Fund, the worst month since July 2008, according to a letter sent to investors. Cantab erased gains for the year in its $2.6 billion CCP Quantitative strategy after it slumped 10 percent, another investor letter showed.

The rout last week erased more than $5.7 trillion from the value of worldwide stocks as Chinese policy makers moved to bolster their market amid mounting concern that the nation’s economy is slowing. Hedge funds posted a 2.2 percent monthly loss in August, according to the HFRX Global Hedge Fund Index, the biggest decline in almost four years.

Winton was started by David Harding and manages $31.4 billion out of London. Cantab was co-founded by the former head of Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s quantitative strategies Ewan Kirk.

Some computer-driven hedge funds made money. AQR Capital Management, led by co-founders Clifford Asness, David Kabiller and John Liew, posted a gain of as much as 2.9 percent in its Managed Futures Fund, bringing annual returns to 5.7 percent, according to a person with knowledge of the firm. AQR, based in Greenwich, Connecticut, manages $136 billion, of which $46 billion is in hedge funds.

Pershing Square Holdings, the publicly traded security of Bill Ackman’s activist hedge fund, erased gains for the year after slumping 9.2 percent last month. The fund is down 0.1 percent since the start of this year, according to the firm’s website.

Officials for the firms either declined to comment or didn’t return messages seeking comment.

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