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More investment staff have left Michael Hintze’s CQS

Revolving Door

CQS, the hedge fund run by Michael Hintze, has been letting people go, and in the past few weeks more analysts, traders and portfolio managers have departed.

Monish Sahni, a former Citi portfolio manager who has been at CQS since 2008, left the firm in May, according to regulatory filings, as did Bojan Milicic, who worked in international business development at the hedge fund.

Ben Halfacre, a portfolio manager who joined from SAC Global Investors in 2011, has also departed the firm. Meanwhile former, SocGen director, Elliot Morley, who worked in tax structuring at CQS, also left last month.

CQS’s $3bn flagship fund ended 2015 down 8%. This year, however, performance has rebounded and was up 16% for the year to June. However, 12 people at the firm were reported to have been earmarked for redundancy in 2016.

Most hedge funds endured a brutal 2015, and increasing numbers of funds either closed entirely or laid off staff. Brevan Howard’s flagship fund also posted its first ever loss and senior investment professionals have been heading for the door over the past few months.

There are some signs that things are slowly getting better, however. Figures from Preqin show that the industry as a whole returned 0.93% in May – an admittedly small gain, but the third successive month the sector has been in positive territory. Event-driven funds lead the way, with 3% year to date returns, but macro strategies are still struggling – losing -0.11% so far this year.

Preqin’s figures also suggest that it’s the larger hedge funds that are failing to turn things around – big funds are the only category still in negative territory for the year, it said.

Meanwhile, Leila Kotlar-Bouget, the global head of client services at CQS who left earlier this year, has just joined CdR Capital – the investment manager founded by former Bluecrest portfolio manager, Steve Smith – as partner.

Photo: DNY59/Getty Images

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