This case is suitable for students in both undergraduate and MBA-level investments courses. With an estimated $3 trillion in assets under management, hedge funds have become an important component of many institutional investors portfolios. For many of these investors, investments in these funds are motivated by the potential for diversification combined with equity-like returns and bond-like risk. At the same time, the difficulty of appropriately benchmarking hedge fund returns and risk, in addition to the high fees associated with these funds, has some investors questioning their decision to invest in these strategies. Using CalPERSs April 2014 reexamination of its Absolute Return Strategies/hedge fund investments as a backdrop, this case examines the decision to invest in hedge funds as a part of a well-diversified institutional portfolio.

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This case is suitable for students in both undergraduate and MBA-level investments courses. With an estimated $3 trillion in assets under management, hedge funds have become an important component of many institutional investors portfolios. For many of these investors, investments in these funds are motivated by the potential for diversification combined with equity-like returns and bond-like risk. At the same time, the difficulty of appropriately benchmarking hedge fund returns and risk, in addition to the high fees associated with these funds, has some investors questioning their decision to invest in these strategies. Using CalPERSs April 2014 reexamination of its Absolute Return Strategies/hedge fund investments as a backdrop, this case examines the decision to invest in hedge funds as a part of a well-diversified institutional portfolio.