Updated with correction.
Among hedge fund hires in the U.S., white employees were the dominant race in all but one category — quantitative analysts — where Asian personnel accounted for 55% of hires between July 1, 2020, and June 30, 2021, according to a report on diversity, equity and inclusion from HFObserver and Solomon-Page Group. Incorrect information about the number of categories dominated by white employees appeared in an earlier version of this story that ran in P&I Daily on Nov. 4.
The global hedge fund industry remains a bastion of white male employees, said a new report about diversity, equity and inclusion.
Analysis of more than 4,300 hedge fund personnel moves between July 1, 2020, and June 30, 2021, including hiring and internal promotions in the U.S., Europe/U.K. and Asia (ex-Australia) found that over the 12-month period, 71% of hedge fund hires at all levels and in all roles in U.S. were male, compared with 74% in Europe/U.K. and 69% in Asia.
The report — "Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, 2021 hedge fund industry report" — was prepared jointly by executive recruiter Solomon-Page Group and HFObserver, a platform that aggregates and analyzes data about personnel moves with a focus on DEI in the alternative investment arena. HFObserver is a division of Kronor Group.
"Hedge funds globally did not hire or promote to support DEI efforts during the period examined," the report's authors said.
By gender, 31% of hedge fund hires for all functions in Asia were women, compared with 29% in the U.S. and 26% in Europe/U.K.
Hedge fund hiring by race was quite different by region, HFObserver data showed.
In the U.S., 64.9% of hedge fund hires or promotions were white people; 25% were Asian; 4.5% were Hispanic; 2.8% were Black; and 2.8% were of other ethnicities.
In contrast, 76.8% of hedge fund personnel moves in Europe/UK were white people; 14.7% were Asian; 4.7% were of other ethnicities; 2.1% were Black; and 1.7% were Hispanic.
In Asia, 91% of people hired were Asian, 7% were white and 2% were of other backgrounds.
HFObservers’ analysis found that across hedge fund roles in the U.S., white employees were the dominant race in all but one category — quantitative analysts — where Asian personnel accounted for 55% of hires. In other categories, the percentage of white employee hires were branding/communications (90%), administration (80%) and operations (74%) to portfolio manager (71%), trader (65%) and software developer (48%).
Drilling deeper into the data, the report found that female portfolio managers were best represented in Asia, accounting for 14% of hires in this category over the yearlong period, compared with 11% in Europe/Asia and 10% in the U.S.
"DEI efforts have become a subject of intense interest to global hedge fund industry professionals," the authors said, noting that the report was created largely in direct response to DEI inquiries received from Solomon-Page Group's network of financial services companies and investment professionals, including hedge fund executives, investors and alternative asset manager allocators.