Another Great Investor You Need To Know: Balestra Capital’s James Melcher


Last week I wrote a post on John Paulson, the man of the moment on Wall Street for his massively profitable returns shorting subprime mortgage backed securities.

Over the weekend, Barron’s wrote an article on top hedge fund performers including a table of the 75 with the best 3 year returns (“Scaling The Heights: The Top 75 Hedge Funds” (subscription required), Barron’s, Saturday April 12).

Of the 75, they picked 5 to profile including Balestra Capital’s James Melcher.  I’ve been a fan of Melcher for a long time, ever since I heard him interviewed on CNBC about how he was shorting mortgage backed securities.

His flagship Balestra Capital Partners returned about 200% last year.

A former world class fencer who competed in the 1972 Olympics in Munich, Melcher named his fund, Balestra, after a fencing move.  He is a global macro investors who focuses on big themes but is a rigorous stock picker as well – my style as well.

For more on Melcher, check out:

“Around The World With Balestra’s Melcher”,, Dec 15, 2005

“A Fencer’s Stance on Investing”, Business Week Online, December 8, 2004

“On Top of His Game: James Melcher ’61 Feints, Invests”, Columbia College Today, Jan/Feb 2008

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