PREMIUM BESPOKE SERVICES

Copley Fund Research

Giving global asset managers unique insight into equity fund positioning, manager sentiment, and portfolio activity, from a universe of 1,300 active managers with over $4 trillion in AUM

PREMIUM BESPOKE SERVICES

Copley Fund Research

Giving global asset managers unique insight into equity fund positioning, manager sentiment, and portfolio activity, from a universe of 1,300 active managers with over $4 trillion in AUM

Frequently Asked Questions

Q&A with Steven Holden, Founder of CFR

Frequently Asked Questions

Q&A with Steven Holden, Founder of CFR

What bespoke research services do you provide to Smartkarma subscribers?

The research is split into two parts.

The first is the kind of Insights you’ll see published on Smartkarma as a subscriber. We’re analysing the positions of hundreds of active Long-Only managers. We look at global active funds, GEM active funds, Asia Ex-Japan, and dedicated China. We look at sentiment and conviction levels across countries, sectors, industries, stocks. We look at manager activity, well-owned stocks, underweighted stocks, and momentum levels. It’s a really thorough analysis of where market participants are positioned.

The second part of the research brings all that data and analysis together, and back to a single fund – one of the funds that reside in our universe. From there, we take that fund out and focus on how it’s positioned against its active peer group; what makes that fund stand out; what stocks they own that others don’t; what stocks they do not own that are well-held by peers. Effectively, what positions are going to be key in outperforming peers in the months and years ahead. From that analysis, a fund’s active position versus its peers can be very different from its position versus the benchmark. To outperform peers, it really pays to know where they’re positioned.

What are your clients’ key use cases?

For Long-Only funds, it’s about incorporating this positioning data into their research process. This can be for idea generation, assisting with the timing of entry and exit of a stock position by understanding where levels of ownership are versus history, and analysing the changes in momentum for a particular stock, industry, or sector.

We can also see where your consensus and out-of-consensus positions are versus your active peer group, not just the benchmark. 

Also, as part of the research package for Long Only funds, we provide the data to their marketing teams that helps identify the unique selling proposition of the fund.

For investment banks, it’s about understanding your clients better. Getting to know their holdings, what they used to own, what they might have interest in.

For all investors, it’s about giving a unique look at key players in the market. We look at historical trends, short-term activity, we analyse new areas of the market, so really it’s about helping with idea generation, market timing, and understanding cycles and sentiment within your market. 

What types of clients find your work most useful?

Any investor with an interest in global, EM, Asia ex-Japan, or China -is a suitable candidate to enjoy our research. A big part of our client base are the Long-Only managers, but we also serve trading desks and teams in investment banks. Our research is suitable for any style of investor with a focus in those regions – from hedge funds to family offices to individuals. 

What is differentiated about Copley Fund Research’s work versus competitors?

We focus on two things:

The first one is the granularity of the data. A lot of competitor offerings show data on the aggregate level without necessarily providing any underlying data that belies that. Every aggregation we do is built up from a single stock position, from a single fund, on a single date. We’re very transparent about it and we show that in our analysis. For example, if you hear of fund flows moving into Russia, we would be able to see which stocks, which sectors have seen those inflows or outflows, and give you the complete picture. 

The second one is the style and methodology of our research. We manage a lot of data, but it’s only as good as how you interpret it. We’ve developed a number of metrics and ways of analysing data that can hopefully provide you with insights that you’ve never seen before. We view the market in quite an original way – we spend time looking at what funds are not holding as much as what they are holding, and you’re not going to get that information from a fund holdings database. 

In summary, the granularity of our data, the style, and the methodology of what we do is what makes us stand out.

What is the key reason that a client should consider Copley Fund Research?

With Copley Fund Research, you get to fully understand positioning in your market – the conviction and sentiment among large groups of smart and well-informed investors. It’s an invaluable addition to an investment tool kit.

What was the gap in the market that led you to found Copley Fund Research?

In the investment banking world, a lot of the focus was given to the views of analysts in the bank – that’s what we were effectively selling. Remarkably little focus was given to what our clients were actually holding – the funds we were actually serving. 

What a fund is holding and, by definition, what they are not holding is a much stronger signal than a price target or a recommendation from an analyst. 

The way I saw it, a PM has the combined views of the entire street to draw from; their own internal research team, company visits, economists, and politicians. They’re at the top of the tree when it comes to information. 

The way they set up their own portfolio is a reflection of that. I set out to find this information and realised I could get this data, manipulate it to see the combined views of hundreds of active managers, and then it was a case of structuring this data into a framework to add insight and value to an investor. That’s what Copley Fund Research does.

What has been the trajectory of your career as a research provider?

I started at Morgan Stanley in 2000, performing a variety of roles there before finding myself on the equity derivatives trading desk. I traded European index options, and then set up a dedicated Emerging Market options trading desk where I traded Russia, South Africa, Turkey, and Myanmar markets. 

In 2010, I moved to Citigroup on derivatives sales trading, and ended my banking career in 2014 in Hong Kong when I moved to New Zealand, where I set up Copley Fund Research.

Why do you choose to work with Smartkarma?

From a publishing perspective, it’s the most usable interface out there. It’s a real pleasure. It really allows us to highlight the research. 

But the real advantage is that you get all these views in one place. 

Even for me as a researcher, to be able to pair what I’m seeing on the positioning side with a fundamental piece from one of the other research providers on Smartkarma is really valuable.

Data-Driven Insights

Active Fund Positioning in Global Markets

Copley Fund Research was founded by Steven Holden to be an independent provider of research on equity fund positioning and performance. Set up in 2014, Copley focuses on global, global EM, US, Asia Ex-Japan and China active equity funds, covering over US$4 trillion in assets across 1,300 active managers.

In these eBooks, you can find samples of Steven’s research, demonstrating how his unique, data-driven approach generates differentiated insight on active fund positioning across markets and sectors.

Data-Driven Insights

Active Fund Positioning in Global Markets

Copley Fund Research was founded by Steven Holden to be an independent provider of research on equity fund positioning and performance. Set up in 2014, Copley focuses on global, global EM, US, Asia Ex-Japan and China active equity funds, covering over US$4 trillion in assets across 1,300 active managers.

In these eBooks, you can find samples of Steven’s research, demonstrating how his unique, data-driven approach generates differentiated insight on active fund positioning across markets and sectors.

EBook - China Active Fund Allocations 350x495
DOWNLOAD
EBook - Emerging Markets Positioning for Active Funds 350x495
DOWNLOAD

Hear Straight From the Source

Hear Straight
From the Source

Steven Copley Podcast Card
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We use Copley to benchmark ourselves versus other EM peers. Specifically Copley was very helpful in helping us position our Greater China Product. We find his data-driven approach refreshing.

Portfolio Manager of USD5b+ EM Fund
quotes-tea-orange

We use Copley to benchmark ourselves versus other EM peers. Specifically Copley was very helpful in helping us position our Greater China Product. We find his data-driven approach refreshing.

Portfolio Manager of USD5b+ EM Fund

Get In Touch

Get In Touch