Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Hedge Funds Shorting Australian Banks

Australia has cut down its reliance on offshore wholesale funding, so it's hard to blame the uncertainty in Europe for this shift in mood, as some analysts are claiming.

US hedge funds dump Australian bank shares
A New York hedge fund manager, who did not want to be named, said sentiment towards the Australian banks had soured because of doubts that the strength in the national property market would be sustained.

"There's a lot of scepticism in the US regarding the Australian property market," the hedge fund manager said.
Westpac is thought to have been targeted most heavily by hedge funds because of its large residential mortgage book, which has grown rapidly over the past two years.

CBA is understood to be least exposed to hedge fund investors compared with its three major rivals, primarily because of its large retail investor base.

Related: Will Fitch pull the trigger? --- and downgrade Australia's banks.

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