NEW YORK - Barton Biggs, 79, the former chief global strategist for Morgan Stanley, who warned three years before the crash in dot-com companies that stocks were too expensive, has died, the bank said Monday.

Morgan Stanley chief executive James Gorman confirmed Mr. Biggs' death in a memo to employees. A bank spokeswoman told the Associated Press the death followed a short illness.

Mr. Biggs cofounded one of the first hedge funds, Fairfield Partners, in 1965, Gorman said. He joined Morgan Stanley in 1973 and founded Morgan Stanley Investment Management in 1975. He served on the bank's board until 1996.

Mr. Biggs retired from Morgan Stanley in 2003 and formed another hedge fund, Traxis Partners.

In a speech in Tokyo on Jan. 21, 1999, Mr. Biggs predicted that a spectacular rally in Internet stocks would "come to a very bad end." The warning was credited with pushing the Dow Jones industrial average down 71 points that day.

Gorman said in the memo to Morgan Stanley employees that Mr. Biggs "left an indelible mark on our business, our culture and our shared notion of leadership at Morgan Stanley."

Mr. Biggs graduated from Yale University and served as an officer in the Marine Corps. He was the author of three books, Hedge Hogging, Wealth War & Wisdom, and A Hedge Fund Tale of Reach and Grasp.

He is survived by a son, two daughters, and nine grandchildren. - AP