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Guernsey’s financial services regulator approved 26 new investment funds during the first quarter of this year, which means there were a total of 113 additions during the 12 months to the end of March.
Figures from the Guernsey Financial Services Commission (GFSC) show that 24 new funds were approved during the second quarter of 2013, 33 during the third, 30 during the final quarter and 26 in the first quarter of 2014.
The GFSC approved four open-ended funds, 14 closed-ended funds and eight non-Guernsey schemes between the start of January and the end of March.
Fiona Le Poidevin, chief executive of Guernsey Finance – the promotional agency for the island’s finance industry, says: “It is very positive to see this high number of new funds being approved for domiciling or servicing in Guernsey. During 2013, there was a notable increase in approvals, especially in the second half of the year and it is encouraging that this has continued during the first quarter of 2014.
“In particular, this is a vote of confidence in Guernsey’s dual regulatory regime which has been developed in response to AIFMD [the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive]. The directive first came into effect in the middle of 2013 but several jurisdictions, such as the UK, took advantage of the transitory year for its implementation and so now the focus is on 22 July 2014.
“Since the end of the first quarter, there have also been a number of other fund launches, ranging from repeat promoters such as HitecVision to new managers such as Fair Oaks Capital; the final closure of high profile fundraisings, such as Permira V at USD7.2 billion; and the licensing of the first non-financial asset depositary under the Guernsey AIFMD rules.
“This shows that Guernsey’s popularity as a centre for fund domiciling and servicing continues to grow as we approach full implementation of AIFMD.”
The figures from the GFSC show that the net asset value of all funds under management and administration in Guernsey fell by GBP1.8 billion (0.6 per cent) during the first quarter to GBP264.2 billion at the end of March.
However, the net asset value of Guernsey funds under management and administration grew by GBP1.2 billion (0.7 per cent) during the quarter to reach GBP179.1 billion, comprising an increase of Guernsey open-ended funds by GBP0.9 billion (2.2 per cent) to GBP42.6 billion and an increase of Guernsey closed-ended funds by GBP0.4 billion (0.4 per cent) to GBP136.5 billion.
The strengthening of sterling against the dollar was a factor in non-Guernsey schemes – open-ended funds which are not domiciled in Guernsey but where some aspect of management, administration or custody is carried out in the island – decreasing in value by GBP3 billion (3.4 per cent) during the first three months of the year to reach GBP85.1 billion.
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