Search activity for the third quarter of 2019 increased 7.7% from the prior quarter and declined 18.6% from the third quarter of 2018. Alternatives searches dropped 66.7% from the same period a year ago. Traditional searches increased 10.81% from last quarter, with equity manager searches increasing 64.29%. Notable activity for the quarter included Connecticut Retirement Plans & Trust Funds' $5.5 billion search for passive investment strategies in fixed income, equities, real estate or commodities. Border to Coast Pensions Partnership also issued $3.2 billion in searches for traditional managers.
Hiring activity decreased 49% from the previous quarter to $44.6 billion, mostly driven by large declines in OCIO hires. The number of hires decreased 24.1% for the quarter and 13% from the same period a year ago. Alternatives hires decreased to 332 from 401 the second quarter, with real assets hires falling 23.08%. Defined contribution and traditional hires declined 48.61% and 37.04% from the same period a year ago, respectively. Blackstone won seven mandates, totaling $2.24 billion, for alternative investments in Capital Partners VIII, Real Estate Partners Europe VI, Strategic Partners Fund VIII, Infrastructure Partners and Strategic Capital Holdings II. National Investment and Infrastructure Fund of India received four mandates worth $2 billion for its Master Fund. Advent International won $1.82 billion worth of 11 mandates mostly for GPE IX, Latin American Fund VII and Global Technology fund.