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Investors generally expect to lock their money into a private equity fund for 10 years but secondary market activity – the buying and selling of assets before the end of a PE fund’s agreed term – is becoming increasingly popular.

Deals worth a record $58bn were completed in 2017 in the private equity secondary market, an increase of 57 per cent on the previous year, according to Greenhill, the US investment bank.

Investors mainly use the secondary market to make adjustments to their existing portfolios or for liquidity purposes.

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