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Hedge Fund Patents

June 16, 2010

Patents that include the term “hedge fund” in at least one claim were extremely rare until last year.  From 2001-2008, there were a total of only four such patents issued.  However, in 2009, there were nine patents issued that included the term “hedge fund” in at least one claim.  In 2010, the Patent Office is on pace to issue twenty-six such patents.

Why the increase in granting these patents?  One answer is that applicants were not filing patents that used that phrase with any regularity prior to the mid-2000s.  From 2001-2005, there were an average of about five published applications per year that used the term “hedge fund” in the claims.  The rate spiked up dramatically in 2006-2008, to a high of twenty such published applications in 2008.  However, the rate has gone back down, such that only nine were published in 2009.   2010 is on pace to have only seven published applications that use the term “hedge fund” in a claim.  It is unclear to me why there was a sharp rise in hedge fund filings followed by a rather sharp drop.  However, assuming the issued patents rate follows the published applications rate, there should be at least one more year of elevated hedge fund patents, followed by a slow down.

Issued Hedge Fund Patents by Year

List of Hedge Fund Patents Since 2001

Listed of Published Hedge Fund Applications Since 2001

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