"Black box" funds are up 4.2% this month, Hedge Fund Research data shows, almost a mirror image of the average hedge fund, which is down 4% on the month.
The biggest of the black boxes, Man Group's flagship AHL strategy, is a case in point: The strategy was up 4.3% in the week ended Monday, bringing the US$23.9 billion fund breathlessly close—it needs an additional return of just 0.3%—to reaching its performance fee hurdle.
"These are the environments in which we're expected to perform," AHL manager Harry Skaliotis told Reuters.
Others are also doing well, including Winton Capital Management's flagship, up 2.2% in August and 7% on the year, and SMN Investment Services' Diversified Futures Fund, which is up 13.7% this month.
Even the losing managed futures funds are beating their average peer. BlueCrest Capital Management's Bluetrend Fund is down just 1.7% this month, leaving it up 4.2% on the year.