Top 10 Investors of All Time

​Benjamin Graham in his book The Smart Investor; “Successful investing isn’t about avoiding risk, it’s about managing it.” says. When it comes to the investment world, it should be said that those who have managed to earn billions of dollars from various investment instruments have the skills to manage risks and evaluate opportunities in the best way, even if they adopt different investment philosophies.

The secret of some investors becoming the stars of the financial world lies in their strong intuition, as well as their knowledge and experience, enabling them to make great profits not only for themselves but also for those who trust them and to continue this for many years.

If you are in the investment world or have goals to become a good investor, we are sure that working on various investment styles and philosophies, getting to know the best investors from different periods, and reading the information they share and their books will open your horizons. Let’s take a look at the journeys of the most successful investors of all time, which we hope will inspire you.

Top 10 Investors of All Time

Benjamin Graham – 1894 – 1976

Considered the “father of value investing,” Benjamin Graham started his career on Wall Street after graduating from Columbia University. Although he lost a significant part of his investments during the Great Depression in 1929, he gained a very respected place in the markets with his “security analysis” and “value investment” concepts and analysis skills he developed in the following years. In his book “Security Analysis”, co-written with David Dodd and published in 1934, he defined the difference between investment and speculation clearly: “Investing is a transaction that promises the security of the principal and an adequate return as a result of a comprehensive analysis. Transactions that do not meet these requirements are speculative.”

Benjamin Graham
Benjamin Graham

The Intelligent Investor, which was published in 1949 and described by his student Warren Buffet as “the best book ever written on investment” and remains popular even today, focuses on the concept of “value investing”. A successful and rigorous analysis enables one to identify the stocks that are traded under their value in the market and defends the view that these stocks will find their true value in the market sooner or later. According to Warren Buffet; “We don’t need extraordinary intelligence, an unconventional business sense, or first-hand confidential knowledge to make successful investments in our lifetime. All that is needed to make a decision is a strong mental structure and the ability to prevent this structure from being worn down by emotions. This book gives a clear and precise description of the correct structure. You will have to provide emotional discipline.”

John Templeton – 1912 – 2008

Investor and fund manager John Templeton entered the mutual fund market in 1954 and founded the Templeton Growth Fund. This fund has grown at an average of over 15% per year for nearly 38 years. I laid the foundations of John Templeton’s fortune in World War II. It is known that just before the start of World War II, it collected shares with a value of less than one dollar in the New York Stock Exchange and dropped it with the appreciation of the shares in the development period after the war.

John Templeton
John Templeton

Considered a pioneer of emerging market investments, Templeton was named “arguably the greatest global stock aggregator of the century” by Money Magazine in 1999.

A student of Benjamin Graham, Templeton became a practitioner of value investing rather than growth investing, focusing on buying stocks he deemed undervalued, and holding the stock until their prices rose to fair market value. He believed that holding assets priced above fair market value in the hope that they would drive prices higher was speculation, not investment. But Templeton didn’t just buy stocks because they were undervalued, he was also careful to invest in companies that were profitable, well-managed and had long-term potential.

Thomas Rowe Price Jr. – 1898 – 1983

Founder of T. Rowe Price, a publicly traded investment firm founded in 1937 and headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland, Thomas Rowe Price Jr. is considered a pioneer of growth investing. Discipline, process, consistency and fundamental research formed the basis of Price’s successful investment career, he sees financial markets as cyclical.

Thomas Rowe Price Jr
Thomas Rowe Price Jr

His investment philosophy was that investors should focus more on collecting individual stocks over the long term. Price, investors; He believed they would get superior returns if they invested in well-managed companies in productive industries whose earnings and dividends were expected to grow faster than the overall economy and inflation. For this reason, special research to guide investment selection and diversification to reduce risk became the basic principles of the company.

Jesse Livermore – 1877 – 1940

Known as the pioneer of day trading, Jesse Livermore was once one of the richest people in the world, but when he died he had more debt than he had assets.

At a time when accurate financial statements were rarely published, obtaining current stock quotes required large operations, and market manipulation were rampant, Livermore used the method we know today as technical analysis as the basis for his trades.

Jesse Livermore
Jesse Livermore

As innovations enter our lives one after another, we cannot ignore the fact that we consume more and get bored more quickly. Since product developers are also aware of this fact, it is certain that different forms such as necklaces and key chains will be developed, especially for smartwatches and wristbands. In fact, these changes started to give their first examples today. Wearable technologies, developed exclusively for women and highlighting design, are on their way to becoming an important market.

Livermore’s short positions before the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and the Wall Street crash of 1929 have become legendary in investment circles. At its peak in 1929, its assets were worth $100 million. This amount is equivalent to approximately 1.5 billion dollars today. The fact that he used his own funds and his own system throughout his career and that he traded on his own, not with someone else’s capital, was one of the most important features that distinguish Livermore from other investors. From this point of view, the magnitude of his success becomes even more surprising.

John (Jack) Bogle – 1929 – 2019

John Bogle, the founder of The Vanguard Group, one of the most successful companies in the investment world, is considered one of the four investment giants of the twentieth century.

Known for creating the first index fund so that average investors can invest more easily and at a low cost, Bogle revolutionized the mutual fund world by introducing the concept of “passive investment” with this move.

John (Jack) Bogle
John (Jack) Bogle

Bogle’s philosophy that average investors will find it difficult or impossible to beat the market over time led him to prioritize ways to reduce the costs associated with investing in mutual funds. That’s why he focused on no-load funds with low turnover and simple investment strategies.

Bogle’s book “Common Sense on Mutual Funds: New Imperatives for the Intelligent Investor”, published in 1999 and describing his investment philosophy, is still considered one of the best books ever written on mutual funds. is being done.

John Neff – 1931 – 2019

John B. Neff started his career at Wellington Management Company. After three years with the company, he became portfolio manager of Vanguard Windsor, Gemini and Qualified Dividend Funds, and remained in that role until his retirement in 1995. Under his direction, Windsor became the largest and highest-yielding fund. The fund delivered an annualized return of 13.7% versus 10.6% for the S&P 500, which is more than 53 times the return on the original investment made in 1964.

John Neff
John Neff

Adopting a reverse investment model based on factors other than market trends, past performance forecasts and current industry indicators, Neff’s investment style was shaped by the low price/earnings ratio (P/E) methodology, and he spent his professional life “disputing with the market” in his own words. Every share Windsor owned was for sale, and Neff continually and gracefully turned the funds into undervalued stocks. The famous investor describes Windsor’s success in his book “John Neff on Investing” published in 2001 with the following sentences:

“Windsor has never been a pompous, whimsical fund or succumbing to market performance. Regardless of whether the market was bullish, bearish or indifferent, it followed a single investment style and the key elements were:

  • Low price-earnings ratio
  • Fundamental growth of more than 7 per cent
  • Yield protection (and improvement in most cases)
  • The superior relationship between total return and price-earnings paid
  • Solid companies in growing areas
  • Strong base case

George Soros – 1930 –

Known for his proficiency in translating far-reaching economic trends into highly leveraged and killjoys in bonds and currencies, George Soros founded Soros Fund Management, a hedge fund company, in 1973. The company later evolved into the Quantum Fund, which is very well known in the markets. Soros has managed this aggressive and successful hedge fund for almost two decades, achieving an annual profit of 30%. It is known that Soros embraced short-term speculation as his investment philosophy and made big bets on the aspects of the financial markets.

George Soros
George Soros

George Soros is unique among successful investors in recognizing that instinct plays a big role in investment decisions. However, he is well-versed in regional and global economic trends and is known to use this knowledge to take advantage of market inefficiencies with large and highly leveraged bets.

Warren Buffett – 1930 –

Warren Buffett, known as “The Oracle of Omaha”, is seen as one of the most successful investors in history. He became interested in the world of investment at a young age and became the centre of his passion and life after he became a student of Benjamin Graham at Columbia Business School. Berkshire Hathaway, which he founded and grew with an investment philosophy based on discipline, patience and value, following in the footsteps of Benjamin Graham, is considered one of the best investment companies in the world with an average annual return of 20%. The buffet is among the richest people in the world today, with a net worth of over $100 billion.

Warren Buffett
Warren Buffett

It is known that Buffet, who prefers to look at companies as a whole instead of focusing on the supply and demand complexity of the stock market, takes into account values ​​such as company performance, company debt and profit margins in purchasing processes.

Carl Icahn – 1936 –

Considered one of the activist investors who aim to gain control by taking part in the boards of directors of the companies they buy and to highlight the company’s leftover values, Carl Icahn is one of the most successful names on Wall Street.

Top 10 Investors of All Time

Icahn, the founder and main shareholder of Icahn Enterprises, has become the 26th richest person and the 5th richest hedge fund manager on the 2020 Forbes 400 list, with a valuation of $16.7 billion.

The investor, who explains his investment philosophy as buying the shares that no one wants to buy, with exceptions, is identified with a slogan called Icahn Lift. Icahn Lift is used to describe the upward jump in the company’s stock prices after Carl Icahn bought shares of a company he believed was poorly managed.

Peter Lynch – 1936 –

In the early 1980s, a young portfolio manager named Peter Lynch took the markets by storm. He managed the Fidelity Magellan mutual fund, which he managed in 1977 with $20 million in assets, and remained at the helm of the mutual fund until 1990, making it the world’s largest mutual fund with a mind-boggling 29% annual profit rate. This performance paved the way for him to be referred to as a “legend” in financial circles.

Peter Lynch
Peter Lynch

Peter Lynch, an investor who enjoys sharing the secret of his success and his investment philosophy, bases the principles of his investment philosophy on the following three pillars in his books:

  • Only buy what you know: According to Lynch, our biggest research tools are our eyes, ears and common sense. If something appeals to you as a consumer, it should also appeal to you as an investment vehicle.
  • Always do your homework well: While first-hand observations are a great start, good ideas need to be backed up by smart research. Meticulous research was the cornerstone of Lynch’s success.
  • Invest for the long term: Lynch, who keeps his knowledge of the companies he owns constantly up to date, is known for not selling his shares unless the story changes.

The investor, who explains his investment philosophy as buying the shares that no one wants to buy, with exceptions, is identified with a slogan called Icahn Lift. Icahn Lift is used to describe the upward jump in the company’s stock prices after Carl Icahn bought shares of a company he believed was poorly managed.

Leave a Reply

Related Articles

Back to top button

We need Your Help!

If you enjoy our content, please support our site by disabling your ad blocker. We depend on ad revenue to keep creating quality content for you to enjoy for free.