A perfect storm

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Convertible arbitrage hedge funds have endured a painful reversal of fortune over the past 18 months. A rash of losing months, heavy outflows and high-profile fund closures prompted one article in the Wall Street Journal to refer to the death of a strategy previously seen by some as the most reliably profitable on the street.

"It's been tough," admits John Burke, the managing partner at Rumson Capital's Navesink Equity Derivative Fund, a New Jersey-based hedge fund that focuses on convertible

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