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The Morning Brief: Are Things Looking Up for Managed Futures? Check Out the Latest Numbers

The average CTA eked out a 0.09 percent gain in February, bringing the total return for the first two months to 1.56 percent, according to Newedge’s Alternative Investment Solutions Group, part of Newedge’s Prime Clearing Services. Graham Capital (K4D-15V) was the top performer in February, posting a 4.04 percent gain, followed by Capital Fund Management’s Discus fund, up 1.77 percent, and FDO Partners’ Emerging Markets Quant Currency, up 1.67 percent.

Also, Deutsche Bank reported on Tuesday that the median performance by CTA/Managed Futures funds was a loss of 0.77 percent in February. For the full year, the median performance worked out to a gain of 1.1 percent in February. For all funds, the median fund gained 0.34 percent in February, boosting the full year gain to 2.51 percent through the end of February. Emerging markets equity funds were the top performer in the first two months, posting a median gain of 4.61 percent.

Farallon Capital Management is passing the hat for a new real estate fund, hoping to raise between $350 million and $400 million, according to a report. This is the San Francisco firm’s first real estate firm. The fund is expected to have a three-year investment period and a life of eight years. Founder Thomas Steyer retired from the firm at the end of 2012. Earlier this year, he was rumored to be a candidate to become the next Energy Secretary, replacing Dr. Steven Chu, who recently returned to Stanford University to teach physics. But earlier this month President Obama nominated MIT professor Ernest Moniz for the post.

Steven Cohen’s SAC Capital Advisors said after the market closed on Tuesday that it owns a 5.1 percent passive stake in Carter’s, which makes children’s clothes. The stock on Tuesday was down 1.5 percent, to close at $56.77.

Ken Griffin’s Citadel Advisors reported it owned 5.1 percent of Ciena, a maker of communications networking equipment, and 5.5 percent of National Financial Partners, a financial services firm. Both stakes are passive.

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