Some investors — including many who invest in quant funds and larger, established names — will be pleasantly surprised by the numbers in what was otherwise a challenging year in a variety of markets. Other investors, especially in equities-oriented funds, will be disappointed by losses that even surpassed that of the S&P 500, which was down about 6.7 percent last year.
CNBC has collated 2018 performance details from people familiar with the performance. All of the below numbers are attributed to sources unless otherwise specified. Representatives for each firm declined to comment.
Large and Diversified:
For the most part, many of the established names with billions of dollars in assets were the stellar performers of 2018. Ray Dalio‘s Bridgewater, the world’s largest hedge fund, postedgains in its flagship Pure Alpha strategy of 14.6 percent net of fees. Citadel founder Ken Griffin’s Wellington Fund is expected to be up more than 9 percent in the year, while its global equities fund generated returns of nearly 6 percent, estimated returns show. D.E. Shaw produced similar returns for its Composite Fund, returning 11.2 percent in the year. Renaissance Technologies’ RIDGE Fund gained upward of 10 percent on the year, while its equities fund jumped 8.5 percent. All of these funds utilize some sort of algorithmic trading, although some employ it more than others.
Other so-called multistrategy funds also were able to beat the S&P 500 by a slightly lower margin. Millennium Management, founded by Izzy Englander, gained almost 5 percent for the year. Och-Ziff Capital Management, the publicly traded hedge fund managed by Daniel Och, lost about 1.3 percent in the year, its regulatory filings showed.