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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

A Star Prognosticator Dies

News summary by MFWire's editors

A superstar fundster analyst died this week. On Monday 70-year-old Martin Zweig passed away.

MarketWatch, the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Wall Street Journal all paid tribute to the fallen investment guru.

The Cleveland native famously and publicly predicted the stock market crash of 1987, just days before Black Monday. From 1971 to 1997 he published The Zweig Forecast and became a star analyst, creating the put/call ratio. In the 1980s he launched his first hedge fund and started a closed-end mutual fund business. Phoenix Investment Partners (now Virtus [profile]) bought Zweig's open- and closed-end mutual fund business, the Zweig Fund Group, in 1999.

In a statement released by Zweig-DiMenna Associates, Zweig's business partner, Joe DiMenna, mourned Zweig as "one of a kind."

"He was a wonderful, kind and generous person and I will always be grateful for the opportunity to have been his friend and partner," DiMenna stated. "He will be missed."

The statement also notes that Zweig was "an avid art and memorabilia collector … an ardent salsa dancer, poker player, runner and student of baseball statistics." He is survived by his wife and two sons, and the family is directing donations to the Zweig Family Center for Living Donation at New York City's Mount Sinai Hospital and to the American Cancer Society.

Company Press Release

Zweig-DiMenna Mourns Loss of Marty Zweig

NEW YORK--With great sadness, Zweig-DiMenna Associates LLC announced the passing of Martin (“Marty”) E. Zweig earlier today.

Born in 1942 in Cleveland, Ohio, Zweig was a legendary investor, prolific writer and iconic teacher. Having begun trading stocks as a teenager, Marty began his more formal career in the 1970s writing investment newsletters while he was a Professor of Finance. One of the most highly regarded investment newsletters in the country, The Zweig Forecast was published for twenty-six years, from 1971-1997. Zweig’s investment picks regularly outperformed the market. The Zweig Forecast ranked number one for risk-adjusted returns during the 15 years it was monitored by Hulbert Financial Digest. Zweig is credited with original and important statistical market research, including the creation of the put/call ratio, a technical measure of investor sentiment that is now a common market indicator. Zweig’s creation of the put/call ratio was part of his ground breaking research for his Ph.D. in Finance. Zweig was also a frequent contributor to business magazines, including Barron’s.

Throughout the 1980s, Zweig was a regular guest on PBS’s Wall $treet Week with Louis Rukeyser. During one such appearance in 1987, Zweig famously and accurately forecasted the October 1987 stock market crash. In 1992, he was voted into Wall $treet Week’s Hall of Fame. He authored two books on the financial markets, the best-selling “Winning on Wall Street,” (1986) and “Winning with New IRAs,” (1987).

In 1984, he and Joe DiMenna founded Zweig-DiMenna Partners, their first of several long/short hedge funds. Zweig-DiMenna Partners is one of the longest-running and most successful of the flexible long/short hedge funds. Zweig also created two closed-end funds traded on the New York Stock Exchange, featuring his investment philosophy - The Zweig Fund in 1986 and The Zweig Total Return Fund in 1988.

Said Joe DiMenna, “Marty became a mentor and close friend shortly after he hired me in 1977 while I was still in college. I had long read his investment newsletters, told him so in a letter, and soon afterwards found myself working with him side by side. He was a wonderful, kind and generous person and I will always be grateful for the opportunity to have been his friend and partner. Marty was one of a kind. He will be missed. On behalf of all the people at our firm, my deepest sympathies and condolences go out to his wife Barbara and his sons Zack and Alex.”

Martin Zweig graduated with a B.A. in Economics from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1964. He later received an M.B.A. from the University of Miami and a Ph.D. in Finance from Michigan State University. Martin Zweig was a member of the Undergraduate Executive Board of The Wharton School and active in a number of charities.

Zweig was an avid art and memorabilia collector. He was also an ardent salsa dancer, poker player, runner and student of baseball statistics.

He is survived by his wife Barbara and sons Zack and Alex.

There will be a celebration of his life with details to be announced.

Donations can be made to the Zweig Family Center for Living Donation at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City or the American Cancer Society.

Edited by: Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

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