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Business

EU Plans No New Hedge Fund Regulations

EU internal market commissioner Charlie McCreevy said Thursday he had no plans for regulating the booming hedge fund industry amid pressure from Germany for tighter rules. "I do not intend regulating in the hedge fund area in the immediate future, if at all," McCreevy told journalists during a news conference on plans to improve the functioning European investment fund market, where five trillion euros are currently under management. Hedge funds are a type of investment fund which use aggressive trading techniques to maximize returns in a relatively short time for their clients, who are generally wealthy individuals or, increasingly, more traditional investment funds such as pension funds. The hedge fund industry, which is largely unregulated in most countries, has been booming in recent years and by some measures makes up half the trades on some stock markets. But concerns have emerged that hedge funds, which have become the symbol for some politicians of unbridled capitalism, represent broader risks for markets and the economy. German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder in particular is seeking minimum international standards for hedge funds, but his bid has run up against opposition from Washington.

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