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Hedge fund body launches transparency drive to head off tougher regulation

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Hedge fund industry group the Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA) has published a new "transparency initiative" intended to raise the standard of fund managers' reporting of short positions and risk.

In a statement, the trade association also said it would support the development of a worldwide manager authorization and supervision framework based on proposals drawn up by the UK's Financial Services Authority.

Andrew Baker, AIMA's chief executive, said the new policy platform is designed to dispel hedge funds' reputation for being "opaque and uncooperative".

Many experts believe the AIMA's move is also intended to deter stricter central regulation of the hedge fund sector in the wake of the financial crisis.

Earlier this week, the downturn was described as a "loud and clear call" for extended regulation by the president of the European Central Bank, Jean-Claude Trichet.

At a one-day summit in Berlin, European leaders also pledged to work together on new rules to increase the scrutiny of the investment pools.

Collectively, AIMA members manage around 75 per cent of the worldwide hedge fund industry's assets.

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