Alma CQS Asian Macro
Cumulative Performance (%)
Fund Inception 28 May 2021
The performance data shown represents past performance. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance quoted. The investment return and the principal value of an investment will fluctuate so that an investor’s shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost.
Strategy & Manager
Alma CQS Asian Macro seeks to generate absolute total returns through the application of a directional discretionary macro strategy, capitalising on investment opportunities driven by the markets and economies of the Asia-Pacific region.
The Investment Manager expresses investment themes through long and short positions in highly liquid, easy-to-price instruments such as futures, forwards and listed options in the equity, commodity, currency and rates markets.
The Investment Manager focuses on investment opportunities driven by the markets and economies of the Asia-Pacific region including Australia, New Zealand, Japan, India, China and the Association of South East
Asian Nations (ASEAN). The Investment Manager focuses on the major regional economies and markets and the Sub-Fund is unlikely to have positions in frontier markets. From time to time the Investment Manager
may take positions in non-Asian markets where the Investment Manager believes there is a significant influence from Asia-Pacific economies or markets.
The Investment Strategy is contrarian, value-orientated and research-driven, and combines longer term strategic positions with shorter term tactical positions. For strategic views, the Investment Manager uses primarily fundamental data while using its proprietary “stress indicators” based on market prices on a daily basis to help with the tactical positioning. The Investment Manager emphasises capital preservation by employing strict risk management and stop-loss disciplines.
The Investment Manager seeks to identify substantial mis-pricings and expects to have two to three investment themes at any point in time. Typically, investment themes form over weeks or months, and would
take 6-18 months or longer to play out, often in several phases or waves across different geographies and asset classes. The Investment Manager may not invest in assets or instruments associated with such investment themes continuously and may trade in and out depending on market conditions.
CQS is a multi-strategy asset manager, founded by Sir Michael Hintze in 1999 with $21.6bn in AUM.
The core investment team of the CQS Asian Macro Fund consists of two dedicated investment professionals: Geoffrey Barker and Nicholas Bibby. The team leverages the insights of the other 70 investment professionals within the CQS investment/research department.
Goeffrey Barker has managed the strategy since inception in 2006 with the same team and investment process.
Prior to joining CQS with his team in August 2019, Geoffrey managed the same Asian Macro strategy that was previously known as Counterpoint. Before this, Geoffrey was the manager of the BIA Pacific Macro Fund (2006-2013) that was twice named “Best Asian Macro Fund of the Year”. Previously, he was the Chief Economist and Head of Research for HSBC in Asia. He also ran the research department and was the Japan economist both for Baring Securities and Smith New Court in Tokyo.
Geoffrey holds an MBA from City University Business School in London and a BSc in Economics and Politics from Bath University, England.
Nicholas joined CQS in 2019 and has 20 years’ industry experience.
He joined following his role as an Economist at the City Financial Investment Company. Previous to that, he held multiple positions as a director, at Ballingal Investment, Barclays Capital and was Executive Director at UBS.
He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Sussex University and a Masters in International and Financial Economics from Durham University.
Statistics & Commentary
The performance data shown represents past performance. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Current performance may be lower or higher than the performance data quoted. The investment return and the principal value of an investment will fluctuate so that an investor's shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost.
Sector Breakdown as a % of AUM
as a % of AUM
as a % of AUM
as a % of AUM
Investment Manager's Commentaryas of 30/07/2021
The performance of the Alma CQS Asian Macro Fund (I1C-U share class) was -0.97% in July
July saw a growth scare in the first half of the month, triggered partly by uncertainty engendered by the spread of the delta variant of COVID and partly by anunexpectedly aggressive approach to regulation by the Chinese authorities that compounded fears of a cyclical downturn. Although also taken aback by this turnof events, we were initially able to profit from them by turning our equity book short and by betting on an unwinding of the speculative long positions built up in
the US Treasury bond market on recovery hopes. We also decided to short cyclical commodities and to build long positions in the US dollar that we thought would benefit as a safe haven and as the US economy continued to outperform.
Only our Bond book turned out to be profitable delivering a gross return of 52bp. In Equities, profits from shorting the Nikkei and the Nasdaq were offset by losses from shorting the Australian SPI and the Russell 2000 that both rebounded strongly in the second half of the month. Our Equity book closed flat. Perhaps the biggest surprise to us was the resilience of Commodities at a time of China-led cyclical weakness. We lost money shorting Copper and Silver that both
proved more resilient than expected, partly because of supply issues but also because of mixed signals from the US Federal Reserve that had been more hawkish than expected in June and was more dovish in July. We lost 92bp in our Commodity book and a further 54bp in Currencies as the US dollar fell back sharply in the aftermath of the FOMC meeting on July 23rd. We were long the US dollar against the Euro, the Indonesian rupiah (a country struggling with COVID) and the Chinese renminbi, all of which recouped losses into month-end.
Taking a step back from the monthly gyrations, we remain highly sceptical of the consensus view that the global economy has begun a new economic cycle and is in the process of “normalizing”. As we have written in our Big Picture commentaries, we believe that disruptions to the global supply chain and the end of “globalization” will prove inflationary as services activity gradually resumes. Ironically, it the slowness of this process that is keeping trouble at bay. We believe risk assets will be de-rated once liquidity starts to be tapered.
Facts & Documents
Fund Domicile: Luxembourg
Fund Type: UCITS SICAV
Fund Launch: 28 May 2021
Base Currency: USD
Depositary, Administrator, Transfert Agent: RBC Investor Services Bank S.A.
Dealing: Each day with a 1-day notice
Cut-off time: 10 am CET
Management Company: Alma Capital Investment Management
Investment Manager: CQS (UK) LLP
Fund Managers: Geoffrey Barker
Countries where the fund is registered:
Luxembourg, Austria, UK
The information related to the integration of sustainability risks and to the potential adverse sustainability impacts at the sub-fund level can be found in the prospectus of the Fund.
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