GLOBAL - State Street Global Advisors has launched its first absolute return currency fund for institutional investors.

SSGA, the asset management arm of State Street Corp., said in a release that the Cayman Islands-domiciled fund would target "hedge fund-of-funds, private banks, family offices as well as institutional investors globally".

It said: "The fund will aim to seek profits by correctly forecasting exchange rate movements and changes in exchange rate volatility using sophisticated quantitative modelling techniques."

It would be co-managed by Paul Duncombe, global head of currency management, and Chris Woods, SSGA's chief investment officer of hedge fund strategies.

"We continue to see a growing interest among existing and new clients in the equity market neutral strategies that we offer," Woods said.

"With the launch of this new absolute return currency fund, we look to provide institutional investors, including pension funds and hedge fund-of-funds, with yet another investment alternative to create a well-diversified portfolio."
SSGA set up its hedge fund strategies group in September 2003.

Meanwhile, State Street also said it has appointed Toby Goold and Paul McGee to its State Street Global Markets' asset owner group.

Goold would "facilitate new business development for the UK asset owner group including transition management, currency overlay and commission recapture". McGee would be transition manager. They were previously at Morgan Stanley and Barclays Global Investors respectively.