Michael Burry: Bullseye in Burgeoning Bounties

Michael Burry: Bullseye in Burgeoning Bounties

By Charles Joseph | Editor, Financial Affairs
Reviewed by Corey Michael | Senior Financial Analyst

Michael Burry is a well-known American investor and a hedge fund manager. Born in 1971, he’s best known for predicting and profiting from the subprime mortgage crisis that occurred between 2007 and 2010. His story was depicted in the book and subsequent movie, “The Big Short”. Burry earned his medical degree but left the medical field to start his own hedge fund, Scion Capital. His distinctive investment strategies have made him a prominent figure in the world of finance. Despite his unconventional methods, his insightful predictions have proven successful, making him a respected name in investment circles.

1. Michael Burry’s Early Life and Education

Michael Burry was born on June 19, 1971, in San Jose, California. He showed an early knack for investment at a young age as he started investing in stocks at just 12 years old. He’s also known to have Asperger’s syndrome, a type of pervasive developmental disorder which is commonly associated with difficulties in social interaction and nonverbal communication.

Burry received his undergraduate degree from the University of California, Los Angeles where he studied economics and pre-med. He then went on to earn a Doctor of Medicine degree from Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. His time in medical school was momentous as this was when he first started developing what would later become his trademark investment analysis methodology.

2. His Shift from Medicine to Finance

Despite earning a Doctor of Medicine, Michael Burry never practiced medicine. During his time at medical school, he spent a significant amount of time trading stocks. Using the money from his student loans, he started exploring various investment options.

His passion for investment ultimately led him to leave the medical field altogether and launch his own hedge fund, Scion Capital, in 2000. The fund started with a small clientele but quickly attracted interest from major investors, thanks to Burry’s analytical approach and keen eye for market trends. His unique strategy of focusing on value investing and buying neglected stocks helped him to consistently beat the market and earn a reputation as an up-and-coming name in finance.

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3. His Prediction of the 2008 Financial Crisis and “The Big Short” Fame

Michael Burry’s real claim to fame came when he predicted the U.S. subprime mortgage crisis that significantly impacted global financial markets between 2007 and 2010. Using his analytical skills, Burry recognized the impending collapse of the housing market and correctly predicted that it would lead to a severe economic downturn.

Burry then made a bold move by betting against the housing market, a decision that was seen as contrarian at the time. This resulted in enormous profits for him and his investors when the housing market did indeed collapse. His exploits during this time were well-documented in Michael Lewis’s best-selling book “The Big Short”, and later in the Oscar-winning movie of the same name, in which Christian Bale plays Burry.


Michael Burry is a true icon in the finance world, not just for his acumen but also for his unique approach to investing. A trained physician who turned to finance, he staked out his claim to fame by predicting one of the most significant financial downturns in modern history, proving the efficacy of his unorthodox methods.

Key Takeaways

  • Michael Burry was born in 1971 and began investing in stocks at just 12 years old.
  • Despite having a medical degree, Burry decided to pursue finance, setting up his own hedge fund, Scion Capital.
  • Burry is best known for forecasting the subprime mortgage crisis that led to the global financial downturn between 2007 and 2010.
  • Michael Burry’s investment strategies and predictions were highlighted in the book and subsequent Oscar-winning movie “The Big Short”.
  • Despite his controversial investment strategies, Burry’s track record has made him a prominent figure in investment circles.

Related Questions

1. Who has played the role of Michael Burry in the movie “The Big Short”?

Christian Bale portrayed Michael Burry in the movie “The Big Short”.

2. What investment strategy is Michael Burry best known for?

Burry is best known for his value investing strategy and his ability to predict market trends, such as the subprime mortgage crisis.

3. What was Michael Burry’s profession before he became an investor?

Before he became an investor, Burry was a trained physician. He pursued and completed his medical degree but never took up medical practice.

4. How was Michael Burry able to predict the subprime mortgage crisis?

Burry was able to predict the subprime mortgage crisis through his in-depth data analysis and his ability to identify market trends and inconsistencies, particularly in relation to the housing market and financial derivatives attached to it.

5. Does Michael Burry manage any hedge funds now?

Yes, Michael Burry currently manages Scion Asset Management, a private investment firm that he founded.