According to performance data released by AIMA, hedge fund outperformed equities and bonds throughout 2015 on both an "absolute and risk-adjusted basis".
Globally, hedge funds finished 2015 up 2.42 per cent net of fees, with 65 per cent of hedge funds reporting positive returns, said AIMA.
Risk-adjusted returns for hedge funds were also positive, as measured by a Sharpe ratio of +0.52, it said.
The best performing strategies were equity market neutral/quant (up 10.44 per cent), long/short equity (up 6.79 per cent) and multi-strategy (up 5.65 per cent).
Total assets under management for the hedge fund industry are "roughly $1.1 trillion", according to AIMA.
AIMA chief executive Jack Inglis said that while 2015 will not be remembered as a "vintage" year for the industry, the majority of hedge funds still produced positive returns.
"[This came] amid challenging market conditions, beating stocks and bonds on both an absolute and risk-adjusted basis and preserving capital for pension funds and other investors," Mr Inglis said.
"Given that this period of market volatility is set to continue during 2016, we remain confident that hedge funds will continue to meet their investors’ expectations for competitive, diversified and low-volatility returns."
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