Famous investors: Famous Investors: Who Has the Best Stock Picking Record? The Motley Fool

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benjamin graham

He invented the concept of value investing in the 1920s — an approach that prioritizes buying stocks priced below their intrinsic values. Graham wrote two of the most famous books on investing, Securities Analysis with David Dodd and The Intelligent Investor. As both a lecturer at Columbia University and a fund manager, Graham played a formative role in Warren Buffett’s ascent as a value investor. We looked at 11 of the greatest investors in history, who have made a fortune off of their success and, in some cases, helped others achieve above-average returns.

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Buffett is also known for his long-term approach to investing, and his ability to stay patient and disciplined even during times of market volatility. Becoming a successful investor requires a combination of knowledge, discipline, and a long-term perspective. It’s important to have a clear and objective investment strategy, based on thorough research and analysis. Investors should also be patient and avoid making impulsive decisions based on short-term market movements and emotions like fear and greed.

of the most famous American investors

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Another characteristic that famous investors share is their focus on and mastery of one specific approach to investing. Not all famous investors earned their public image by creating wealth via the stock market. Billionaire real estate investors Sam Zell, Stephen Ross, and Donald Trump are famous for their ability to profit from real estate investments. Meanwhile, Bill Gross — dubbed the «King of Bonds» — eschewed the stock market in favor of bond investing.

The idea here is that markets can create their own successes or failures merely through the belief of investors. So if investors continue to fund a money-losing business through tough times, they may eventually allow it to succeed. Similarly, if they withhold money from a struggling business, they may cause it to fail. So belief can end up creating a self-fulfilling prophecy for the company, regardless of the reality.

What are some of the investment strategies used by top investors?

These investors differ widely in the strategies and philosophies that they applied to their trading. Some came up with new and innovative ways to analyze their investments, while others picked securities almost entirely by instinct. Where these investors don’t differ is in their ability to consistently beat the market. George Soros is one of the most famous investors on the planet, but he’s more a trader or speculator than an investor. He’s typically not an investor who buys to hold, as Warren Buffett often will. Instead, Soros will trade in and out of a position, and he’s not afraid to buy right back into a position that he’s just sold if new information makes him think it will move higher.

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In 1996, Gross was the first portfolio manager inducted into the Fixed Income Analysts Society hall of fame for his contributions to the advancement of bond and portfolio analysis. Full BioMichael Boyle is an experienced financial professional with more than 10 years working with financial planning, derivatives, equities, fixed income, project management, and analytics.


Given the changes, it is important to realize that the markets can change. There are different types of investment gurus ranging from value investors to quantitative traders. Icahn famously took the other side of Ackman’s trade on Herbalife, called him a “liar” and “crybaby” on national TV and ended up making a fortune by buying up a huge chunk of the stock and holding for years. He took a bath on rental car company Hertz, however, basically wiping out a $1.8 billion investment there as the company announced bankruptcy in 2020.

George Soros

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Warren Buffett is widely considered the most successful investor of the 20th century. Often described as a chameleon, Lynch adapted to whatever investment style worked at the time. But when it came to picking specific stocks, he stuck to what he knew and/or could easily understand.

Bankrate principal writer James F. Royal, Ph.D., covers investing and wealth management. His work has been cited by CNBC, the Washington Post, The New York Times and more. Any estimates based on past performance do not a guarantee future performance, and prior to making any investment you should discuss your specific investment needs or seek advice from a qualified professional.

More importantly, Lynch reportedly beat theS&P 500Index benchmark in 11 of those 13 years, achieving an annual average return of 29%. Livermore began trading for himself in his early teens, and by the age of 16, he had reportedly produced gains of more than $1,000, which was big money in those days. Over the next several years, he made money betting against the so-called “bucket shops,” which didn’t handle legitimate trades—customers bet against the house on stock price movements.

Investment Tips for Beginners from Warren Buffett

Before those roles, Krawcheck led some of Wall Street’s biggest names, including serving as the CEO of Merrill Lynch, Smith Barney, US Trust, Citi Private Bank, and Sanford C. Bernstein. Krawcheck is on a mission to help women reach their financial and professional goals and narrow the gender pay and wealth gap. Lynch has authored several classic books on investing, including One Up on Wall Street, Beating the Street, and Learn to Earn (with the latter co-authored with John Rothchild). John Bogle founded the Vanguard Group and before his death served as a vocal proponent of index investing. Benjamin Graham was an influential investor who is regarded as the father of value investing. In 2014, Gross resigned from PIMCO during a period of internal management struggles, but he continued managing large bond portfolios for firms like Janus Henderson, where he remained until 2019.

Ben Graham is hailed as the father of value investing, an approach that tries to buy $1 in value for $0.75 or even less. He brought intellectual rigor to the practice of investing, and is also famous as the early instructor of Warren Buffett. Our experts have been helping you master your money for over four decades. We continually strive to provide consumers with the expert advice and tools needed to succeed throughout life’s financial journey.

Carl Icahn is a well-known activist investor who uses ownership positions in publicly held companies to force changes to increase the value of his shares. Icahn started his corporate-raiding activities in earnest in the late 1970s and hit the big leagues with hishostile takeoverof TWA in 1985. Buffett’s investing style of discipline, patience, and value has consistently outperformed the market for decades.

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