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HFR: Hedge fund liquidations reach highest level since 2008

The rate of hedge fund liquidations in 2016 was at the highest level in eight years as the pace of hedge fund launches fell to its lowest over the same time span, data released Friday by Hedge Fund Research showed.

Hedge fund closures numbered 1,057 in 2016, up 8% from 979 in 2015, and the largest since 2008 when 1,471 hedge funds were shuttered.

There were 729 new hedge funds launched last year, down 25% from 968 in 2015, representing the slowest growth rate since 2008 when only 659 new funds were set up, according to HFR data.

The total number of hedge funds and hedge funds of funds was 9,893 as of Dec. 31, down from 10,131 a year earlier.

“Hedge fund liquidations in 2016 … (underscored) the shifting investor risk tolerance and steadily increasing concentration of investor capital in mid-to-large hedge fund firms,” said HFR President Kenneth J. Heinz in a news release accompanying the firm's latest data report.