By Laurence Fletcher
LONDON (Reuters) - Investors' net withdrawals from hedge funds hit their highest level in nearly two years last month, data showed on Monday, as the funds struggle to make money in choppy markets dominated by fears over the eurozone's deepening debt crisis.
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Net hedge fund outflows, as measured by GlobeOp's <GO.L> Capital Movement index, were 0.2 percent of GlobeOp's assets under administration in the month to July 1 -- the highest monthly net outflow since October 2009.
The withdrawals, which buck the trend for investors to return to hedge funds in the aftermath of the credit crisis, may reflect nervousness about recent poor performance from portfolios that many expect to make or preserve money in all market conditions.
The average hedge fund lost 1.22 percent in performance terms last month, according to Hedge Fund Research, after losing 1.14 percent in May, as managers struggled to deal with market uncertainty over Greece's attempts to push through austerity measures needed to secure a bailout.
"May and June were definitely not good months for the industry overall, including equities. Redemptions based on that may filter through in the next few months -- you may be seeing results from May reflected in July," GlobeOp CEO Hans Hufschmid told Reuters.
Last month's GlobeOp Forward Redemption Indicator showed more investors asked for their money back than in any other month this year.
Outflows are still well below the 15.21 percent net redemptions of January 2009 in the depths of the credit crisis.
(Reporting by Laurence Fletcher; Editing by David Hulmes)