Braga's Systematica Raises $450 Million for New Hedge Fund

Hedge fund manager Leda Braga’s Systematica Investments Ltd. has raised about $450 million for a new fund that trades in less liquid markets such as interest rate swaps and emerging market currencies.

The third product overseen by the firm increases assets under management to $9 billion, Declan Ryan, head of investor relations at Systematica, said in a telephone interview. The firm plans to eventually manage $2 billion in the new fund, which started in October, Ryan said.

The Systematica Alternative Markets (SAM) fund follows mathematical models to determine when to buy or sell a security or financial contract, similar to its main BlueTrend fund. The new fund will, however, avoid more popular trades such as WTI, Brent crude, S&P futures, U.S. Treasuries and Japanese government bonds as it bets less liquid markets will yield higher returns.

Specialist alternative markets “appear to be less susceptible to broader macro concerns,” Braga, 49, said by e-mail. “They can act as a powerful diversifier to traditional forms of trend following.”

SAM will trade financial instruments such as equity swaps in European utilities, emerging market currencies and credit indexes. The fund lost 0.87 percent in October, according to a letter to investors seen by Bloomberg. That compared with a 1.2 percent decline in the Eurekahedge CTA/Managed Futures Hedge Fund Index.

Trend-following hedge funds such as SAM and BlueTrend managed $238 billion at the end of October, according to data compiled by researcher Eurekahedge.

Braga left Michael Platt’s BlueCrest Capital Management in January to found Jersey, Channel Islands-based Systematica. BlueCrest said earlier this month it is selling most of its stake in Systematica to Affiliated Managers Group Inc.

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