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Crypto Fund Cautions That Record Quarter Is ‘Not a New Normal’ - BLOOMBERG

APRIL 21, 2024

BY  Emily NicolleBloomberg News

, Source: T3 Index

(Bloomberg) -- Nickel Digital Asset Management has tempered expectations for its $80 million Diversified Alpha fund after elevated cryptocurrency volatility powered its best-ever quarterly performance. 

The fund, which seeks to exploit market pricing inefficiencies, returned a net 11% in the first three months, according to an investor presentation seen by Bloomberg News. Nickel typically guides investors to expect 15%-20% annual returns for the vehicle, Chief Executive Officer Anatoly Crachilov said in an interview. 

An exceptional mix of volatility, massive volumes and “high dispersion” drove Diversified Alpha’s gains to 5% in March, according to the presentation. Yet Nickel took pains to explain in the presentation that those conditions can’t be expected to last, and that higher risk in the fund could lead to larger-than-typical drawdowns. 

Read more: Bitcoin Volatility Spike Heralds an Early Test of US ETF Demand

“Unfortunately, this is not a new normal, we won’t make 5% every month going forwards,” said David Fauchier, Diversified Alpha’s manager, in the presentation. “Everything you could want in a quarter pretty much happened at some point during that quarter.”

Nickel is far from the only crypto manager posting a bumper quarter, with funds from Brevan Howard and Pantera Capital also riding the bull market to big gains. Bitcoin rallied 67% in the period, far outpacing most other asset classes, while the broader Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index jumped 57%. 

But while many crypto hedge funds largely mirrored broader market uplift, Diversified Alpha’s blowout performance prompted some caution from Nickel. 

“We don’t want to overstep expectations,” Michael Hall, Nickel Digital’s chief investment officer, said in an interview. “We want to let them know that they can have negative months as well. That’s just being honest and straightforward.”


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