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Standard & Poor&#39s release Asian report

South East Asian markets have provided a challenging year for fund managers according to a report by Standard & Poor&#39s.

The report says over the last year there has been considerable disparity in market results.

The Hong Kong Hang Seng index was up 41 per cent while at the other end both the Thailand and Philippines indexes were down 30 per cent.

Leading funds in 2000 have been those where managers have made decisive country bets relative to regional benchmarks, by overweighting Hong Kong and avoiding the poorer and smaller markets.

The report also claims that several groups have increased their regional teams highlighting the international asset management’s continued commitment to the area.

Standard & Poor’s associate director and Asian analyst Guy Boden says "A factor behind the disparity in the region has been the increasing number of different benchmark indices being used by fund managers. With more funds becoming index related over recent years, the increasing use of benchmarks made up of different countries does result in a significant variation in returns particularly after the wide range of market performances recorded last year."

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