The Blackstone Group is a money raising machine. So much so they are now planning a significant move into hedge funds. Peter Smith at the Financial Times reports that Blackstone believes it can eventually manage some $10 billion in hedge fund assets. This comes in addition to the group’s sizeable funds in private equity and real estate.

breakingviews wonders whether Blackstone’s foray into hedge funds is altogether wise. Blackstone will likely have to raid other hedge fund shops to gain the talent needed to successfully operate a large hedge fund operation. To date, Blackstone has been able to keep their many investors satisfied. Can Blackstone avoid the performance potholes of the hedge fund arena while managing the potential conflicts of interest inherent in running different alternative assets under the same corporate roof?

According to Chuck Jaffe at, the new hybrid mutual fund from Highbridge Capital Management and J.P. Morgan Chase is the “Stupid Investment of the Week.” According to Jaffe,

An investor who likes the idea of getting into a hedge fund “on the cheap” needs to remember that sometimes, you get what you pay for, and this may well be one of those times.

As reported in the Wall Street Journal, Citigroup is launching a new dollar index that attempts to improve on the various trade-weighted currency indices. The new dollar index will use capital flows to measure the composite value of the dollar. Some analysts wonder whether this is either possible or altogether wise.

More on the Japan investment theme. Mark Hulbert at reports that the iShares Japan Fund (EWJ) has become one of the most recommended securities by newsletter writers.

Gold has hit its highest level since 1983. No wonder the medals for the Winter Olympics are doughnut-shaped.

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