Hedge Funds: An Analytic Perspective

Andrew W. Lo, 2008
Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press
41 William Street, Princeton, New Jersey 08540 USA
Tel: 609 258-4900
Fax: 609-258-6305
URL: http://press.princeton.edu
ISBN: 978-0-691-13294-5

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(Excerpt from book cover)

The hedge fund industry has grown dramatically over the last two decades, with more than eight thousand funds now controlling close to two trillion dollars. Originally intended for the wealthy, these private investments have now attracted a much broader following that includes pension funds and retail investors. Because hedge funds are largely unregulated and shrouded in secrecy, they have developed a mystique and allure that can beguile even the most experienced investor. In Hedge Funds, Andrew Lo--one of the world's
most respected financial economists--addresses the pressing need for a systematic framework for managing hedge fund investments.

Arguing that hedge funds have very different risk and return characteristics than traditional investments, Lo constructs new tools for analyzing their dynamics, including measures of illiquidity exposure and performance smoothing, linear and nonlinear risk models that capture alternative betas, econometric models of hedge fund failure rates, and integrated investment processes for alternative investments. He concludes with a case study of quantitative equity strategies in August 2007, and presents a sobering outlook regarding the systemic risks posed by this industry.