Global hedge fund strategies saw net inflows of $17.7 billion in the first quarter, driven by strong performance and inflows into multistrategy funds, a report from eVestment said Friday.
By comparison, hedge fund strategies saw net outflows of $9.1 billion in the first quarter of 2020 and net outflows of $8 billion in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Assets under management in hedge fund strategies increased 1.8% to $3.42 trillion for the three months ended March 31 and increased 16% compared with the same quarter a year earlier.
Multistrategy funds saw the biggest net inflows, reaching $12.1 billion in the quarter compared to net inflows of $3.3 billion in the first quarter of 2020 and net outflows of $1.7 billion in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Macro hedge funds recorded inflows of $200 million in the quarter but saw $4.3 billion outflows in the month March, bringing net outflows to $4.1 billion for the quarter. Macro hedge funds recorded net outflows of $13 billion in the first quarter of 2020 but net inflows of $4.2 billion in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Investors also withdrew a net $5.3 billion from long/short equity funds in the quarter, which saw the biggest net outflows over the three months. Long/short equity strategies recorded $3.6 billion in net inflows in the first quarter of 2020 but saw $6 billion in net outflows in the fourth quarter of 2020.
Investors also pulled a net $1.7 billion from relative value credit strategies in the quarter. That compared with $3.7 billion in net inflows in the first quarter of 2020 and $2.4 billion in net outflows in the fourth quarter of 2020.
"The theme of broadly distributed inflows we've seen in previous months this year slowed in March, with the overall proportion of funds with inflows in March at 47%," Peter Laurelli, global head of research at eVestment, said Friday in a news release.
"Unfortunately, several funds, some with long and impressive track records, are seeing redemption repercussions from underperformance in 2020, hurting the overall picture of their segments and the hedge fund business," he added.