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- May 1, 2013: Vol. 25, Number 5

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Golden Geese: Sovereign wealth funds are awash in money, and their penchant for real estate is growing

by Mike Consol

 

Though he was not speaking specifically of investment managers, the great novelist F. Scott Fitzgerald summed up the unique anguish of the pursuit of money when he wrote that the people who gathered at Jay Gatsby’s lavish parties were “agonizingly aware of the money in the vicinity and were convinced it was theirs for a few words in the right key.”

There are few places where that agony reaches a more fevered pitch these days than in the magisterial offices of the world’s sovereign wealth funds (SWFs). Ten years ago, few people had scarcely heard of SWFs; today, they have more assets under management than hedge funds and private equity firms combined, with coffers that have swelled to roughly $5.3 trillion. Assets are predicted to grow by $1 billion per day this year, according to a report issued by TheCityUK, an organization that promotes the United Kingdom’s financial an

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