The show must go on

January 19, 2014 06:25 AM
Blog first appeared in DanCollinsReport on Nov. 18, 2013

As they say in show business, “The Show Must Go On,” and apparently that holds to for investment conferences, especially those in warm weather cities in winter booked a year or more in advance.

Today Context Capital Partners and former members of the AlphaMetrix Events management team announced that the formerly titled AlphaMetrix 2014 Miami Summit, now rebranded as the Context Miami Summit 2014, will go on as scheduled in January with Context honoring all those who registered with AlphaMetrix.

AlphaMetrix has been in somewhat of a downward spiral since announcing on Oct. 10 that it was experiencing “significant cash flow issues” in a letter to its commodity pool participants signed by President and CEO Aleks Kins.

This led the National Futures Association and CME Group to end a service agreement with AlphaMetrix and on Oct. 21 the NFA filed a member responsibility action (MRA) ordering it to satisfy obligations to certain pool participants by Nov. 1. The firm had deducted advisory fees for certain participants in commodity pools operated by the firm. Those fees were to be reinvested in the pools but were not. The total amount owed to participants was approximately $600,000 according to the NFA.

Apparently AlphaMetrix was not able to meet its obligation and on Oct. 30 announced that it would stop trading on Oct. 31 and liquidate the fund.

Their statement noted, “For all investors who have not already redeemed, it is anticipated that AlphaMetrix will distribute 90% of the proceeds to investors on or about November 21, 2013. The balance will be distributed upon the completion of a final audit.”

AlphaMetrix’ problems were not over as the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) on Nov. 4 charged the firm with “misappropriated at least $2.8 million in funds belonging to participants of numerous pools operated by AlphaMetrix and issued false or misleading account statements to these pool participants that concealed its fraud.”

AlphaMetrix denied the charges in a statement.

AlphaMetrix had innovated conferences by automating meetings between allocators and managers. However, many industry participants questioned its conference model as it was short on sponsors and long on expensive speakers and entertainment.

And it is not as if Northerners looking to spend a few days in the sun do not have alternatives. AlphaMetrix originally scheduled its conference close to the Managed Funds Association annual Network event in South Florida.

More recently, CTA Expo has added a Miami event in December to its schedule of managed futures conferences targeting emerging managers. CTA Expo had found a niche of commodity trading advisors and emerging managers for its conferences that are heavier on networking and lighter on expensive speakers and entertainment.

We recently spoke to CTA Expo founders Frank Pusateri and Bucky Isaacson regarding the evolution of CTA Expo.



About the Author

Editor-in-Chief of Modern Trader, Daniel Collins is a 25-year veteran of the futures industry having worked on the trading floors of both the Chicago Board of Trade and Chicago Mercantile Exchange.