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Reproduced from eVestment; Chart: Axios Visuals

Hedge funds outperformed the S&P 500 in March and have suffered fewer losses this year, showing their value during crisis periods, data from eVestment shows.

The state of play: March’s average loss was the second largest on record and largest since the height of the global financial crisis in October 2008 when the average fund lost 8%-9%.

The big picture: Hedge fund returns were highly differentiated and the 10 largest funds again managed to outperform the aggregate.

Of note: Managed futures strategies have been the shining star of the asset management world in 2020 after poor performance and outflows since 2016.

  • Managed futures strategies were "the only primary strategy with positive average returns in March and had by far the best proportion of products able to produce gains, with 53% of managers positive in March," Peter Laurelli, eVestment's global head of research, writes in a note.

What it means: Managed futures strategies are funds that can invest in many different asset classes and focus on systematic trends within assets, typically using derivatives and leverage.

Go deeper: A coronavirus guide for individual investors

Go deeper

Mitch McConnell's remarks on Black voters raise ire

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell during a Capitol Hill news conference earlier this year. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has been widely criticized on for comments he made this week on Black American voters.

Driving the news: When asked by a reporter on Wednesday about concerns among voters of color, McConnell said "the concern is misplaced, because if you look at the statistics, Black American voters are voting in just as high a percentage as Americans."

Updated 56 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Trump’s friends worry legal pick for N.Y. case lacks experience

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Brandon Bell/Getty Images

Close associates and advisers to Donald Trump tell Axios they're concerned by his decision to use a relatively inexperienced New Jersey attorney, Alina Habba, in his high-stakes legal fight against New York Attorney General Letitia James.

Why it matters: A former president typically has access to the country's most prestigious experts, including lawyers. Trump has turned to the former general counsel for a parking garage company, who works from a small law office near his Bedminster, N.J., country club.

U.S. charges 4 Belarus officials with air piracy in journalist's arrest

A Boeing 737-8AS Ryanair passenger plane from Athens, Greece, that was diverted to Minsk, Belarus, in May. Photo: Petras Malukas/AFP via Getty Images

The Justice Department on Thursday charged four Belarusian government officials with conspiracy to commit aircraft piracy as part of an operation to arrest a dissident Belarusian journalist.

Why it matters: Prosecutors say the officials fabricated a bomb threat aboard a Ryanair flight carrying the journalist Raman Pratasevich last May, forcing it to land in Minsk, Belarus instead.

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