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Hot Hedge Fund Strategies: How To Get In!

Tuesday, 19 Jun 2007 | 2:03 PM ET

130/30, 120/20, 140/40. No, they're not prescriptions from your eye doctor. They are the latest trend in the investing world, that allows traditional, long-term investors to use shorting to boost returns.

Very simply, the funds leverage up to 130% (or 120% or 140%, depending on the flavor of the strategy) long exposure usually to an index or sometimes a basket of stock picks. They then short 30% (or 20 of 40%), betting against the stocks they think are overvalued. And voila! 100% net exposure.

The academic studies are out there, showing that traditional managers get better return when they are freed up to short. But whether it's a winning strategy in practice may not yet be known. Many of these managers, after all, are used to the confines of traditional long-only investing and shorting is a new game for them. Still, many asset managers are making these strategies available to their big institutional investors, including pensions.

Name 1- Yr Return
ING Inv Mgt Americas 130/30 8.4%
JPMorgan Large Cap Core 130/30 19.3%
Martingale Enhncd Alpha (130/30) LrgCore 13.6%
Martingale EnhdAlpha (130/30) LrgCore500 16.8%
SSgA Index Plus Edge Strategy (130/30) 16.4%
UBS Global U.S. Equity 130/30 14.8%
S&P 500 11.8%
Source: Morningstar

As you see, many of the asset managers who offer 130/30 are beating their benchmarks, according to Morningstar.

So, how can you, the average investor, get in on this? Morningstar says there is one open-ended mutual fund that employs this strategy: the ING Fundamental Research 130/30 fund . Check out this link for more information on this fund.

Questions? Comments? PowerandMoney@cnbc.com