Standard & Poors plans to launch an investible hedge fund index later this year, probably around the third quarter, according to a news release from S&P. The index will include 40 hedge funds spanning nine strategies: macro; equity long-short; managed futures; special situations; merger arbitrage; distressed; fixed-income arbitrage; convertible arbitrage; and equity market neutral. The strategies will be grouped into three broader categories: arbitrage, event-driven and tactical. Managers will be selected based on S&Ps screening for return and risk characteristics; the managers agreement to provide daily transparency for verification by a third party, Derivatives Portfolio Management; and passage of due diligence conducted by hedge fund consultant Albourne Partners. Once compiled, the index will be maintained by a committee. All strategies will be equally weighted. S&P has given PlusFunds exclusive rights to develop investible products based on the index.