Howard’s performance marks a significant turnaround for macro trading, a hedge fund strategy that has struggled to make money for years. Middling performance had prompted investors to pull money from some of the oldest and most established macro traders including Brevan Howard, Tudor Investment Corp. and Caxton Associates. That’s reversing now, with investors pouring nearly $12 billion into such funds during the first four months of the year, the most of any strategy, according to data compiled by eVestment.
The Commerce Department said on Wednesday the trade gap dropped 2.1 percent to $46.2 billion, the smallest since September. Data for March was revised to show the trade deficit falling to $47.2 billion, instead of the previously reported $49.0 billion.
The government also revised trade data going back to 2010. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast the trade deficit unchanged at $49 billion in April.
The Stoxx Europe 600 was up 0.2% in morning trading after stocks in Japan and Hong Kong edged up 0.4% and 0.5% respectively. Futures pointed to a 0.2% opening climb for the S&P 500 after a rise in technology stocks helped the index notch a third straight session of gains.
Energy and mining companies drove most of the advance in Europe and Asia on Wednesday as oil and metals prices rose. Aluminum and copper futures moved higher while Brent crude oil was last up 0.4% at $75.66 a barrel ahead of U.S. inventory data.
Oil traded near $65 a barrel as an industry report showing a drop in American crude stockpiles helped counter fears that supplies may gain after the U.S. was said to ask OPEC to boost output.
Futures in New York were little changed, following a 1.2 percent advance on Tuesday. The American Petroleum Institute was said to report nationwide crude inventories fell over 2 million barrels last week. Meanwhile, the U.S. government has asked Saudi Arabia and some other members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries to increase output by about 1 million barrels a day, according to people familiar with the matter.
As Mr. Hansen conceded, "it was something that had a high probability of happening sometime".