Last year was the first year since 2010 when the private-equity fundraising failed to match or exceed the previous year's total; still, it was the second-highest annual sum in the industry's history.
Private-equity funds took in $595B globally last year, about 5.3% less than the record of $628B set in 2017, the Wall Street Journal reports, citing data from Preqin Ltd.
2018's haul was about the same as the previous year.
There are few indications that demand for the asset class has waned, though. Public pension funds, hurt by declining yields on traditionally safe assets, are increasing their allocations to private equity and other alternative investments.
Also U.S. regulators are considering ways to allow more average investors access to private equity.
However, some investors are concerned that the large amounts raised in recent years are driving up asset prices and making it harder for firms to invest profitably.
It seems investors may be preparing for a potential downturn. Investment in natural-resource funds increased 2% and in infrastructure funds rose 4% — both classes are considered safer in a slump as they're less tied to the broader financial markets.
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