Table of Contents

Research Handbook on Hedge Funds, Private Equity and Alternative Investments

Research Handbook on Hedge Funds, Private Equity and Alternative Investments

Research Handbooks in Financial Law series

Edited by Phoebus Athanassiou

This unique and detailed Handbook provides a comprehensive source of analysis and research on alternative investment funds in the EU, the US and other leading jurisdictions.

Introduction

Edited by Phoebus Athanassiou

Subjects: economics and finance, corporate governance, financial economics and regulation, law - academic, finance and banking law, law -professional, finance and banking law

Extract

This book is published at a time of unprecedented crisis. A few words on its origins, their link to the activities of alternative investment funds and the recent surge to regulate them are deemed appropriate, by way of introduction. The progressive deregulation of the European and US banking and financial systems, in conjunction with the galloping pace of financial globalization, have been amongst the salient characteristics of the last two decades of the history of finance. One of the most enduring legacies of the deregulation era, which was to see a flurry of promising financial innovation, has been the greater susceptibility of the European and US economies to asset and market bubbles, corporate scandals and failures and, more recently, to generalized financial sector and, in some cases, sovereign crises. As for globalization, one of its most lasting legacies has been the increasing vulnerability of national economies to financial meltdowns in the face of large, ‘imported’ shocks. While globalization is, to some extent at least, something of a natural phenomenon, with technological innovation greatly facilitating the flow of capital from one corner of the world to the other, exposing market players to cross-border risks, deregulation is more a matter of choice. The policy makers’ conscious decision to substitute the ‘heavy hand of government’ with the wisdom of the markets and the promise of financial innovation to contribute to the better pricing and spreading of risk have seen the US Congress repeal the Depression-era Glass-Steagall Act, which prevented depository (commercial) banks from...