Ex-Morgan Stanley Strategist Barton Biggs Has Died

Barton Biggs, Morgan Stanley’s former chief global strategist and co-founder of one of the first hedge funds, has died at age 79.

Barton Biggs
Jin Lee | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Barton Biggs

He died Saturday after a short illness, a bank spokeswoman said.

In 1965, Biggs co-founded Fairfield Partners, one of the first hedge funds, according to James Gorman, chairman and CEO of Morgan Stanley . Biggs founded Morgan Stanley Investment Management in 1975 and served as its chairman until 2003. He served on Morgan Stanley's board until 1996.

In January 1999, he warned that a spectacular rally in Internet stocks would "come to a very bad end." The most widely watched measure of technology stocks, the Nasdaq composite index, peaked on March 10, 2000, before losing almost 80 percent of its value over the next 2 1/2 years.

In a memo to employees Monday, Gorman said Biggs "left an indelible mark on our business, our culture and our shared notion of leadership at Morgan Stanley."

"He was known as an independent thinker, colorful writer and one of the pioneers of emerging markets investing," Gorman wrote, "and our firm benefited from his vision."

Biggs graduated from Yale University and served as an officer in the Marine Corps. He was the author of three books.

Biggs left Morgan Stanley in 2003 to found the investment advisory firm Traxis Partners.

He also wrote three books and served as chairman of the Riversville Foundation, which funds scholarships for disadvantaged students.

Biggs is survived by his son, his two daughters and nine grandchildren.