NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Publications by Yingcong Lan

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March 2011The Economics of Hedge Funds: Alpha, Fees, Leverage, and Valuation
with Neng Wang, Jinqiang Yang: w16842
Hedge fund managers are compensated via management fees on the assets under management (AUM) and incentive fees indexed to the high-water mark (HWM). We study the effects of managerial skills (alpha) and compensation on dynamic leverage choices and the valuation of fees and investors' payoffs. Increasing the investment allocation to the alpha-generating strategy typically lowers the fund's risk-adjusted excess return due to frictions such as price pressure. When the manager is only paid via management fees, the manager optimally chooses time-invariant leverage to balance the size of allocation to the alpha-generating strategy against the negative impact of increasing size on the fund's alpha. When the manager is paid via both management and incentive fees, we show that (i) the high-powere...

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