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Peter Lynch

World’ s Famous Investors

Peter Lynch
January 19, 1944, United States

Peter Lynch is a successful Wall Street investor, and arguably one of the best stock-pickers in the world. He was president of the international investment management firm Fidelity.

Peter was born in 1944 in the USA. He served for two years in the United States Army and studied finance at the Wharton School business and the University of Pennsylvania before becoming an analyst in 1969 for the international investment management firm Fidelity. In 1974 Peter was promoted to director of research and took on the Fidelity Magellan fund in 1977. When peter took on the fund it had $22million in assets.

Peter Lynch

Peter took on a grueling work load in which he worked six or seven days a week. During this time he talked to company managers, brokers and analysts every day. With the help of just  two research assistants, he ran a portfolio of up to 1,400 stocks at any one time. Some of these stocks he bought at an early stage of growth or recovery and held for years, but most of the stocks he bought he became displeased with and sold within months of their purchase, admitting that over half his choices were mistakes. The Fidelity Magellan fund averaged an amazing 29.2% return a year, and only underperformed the S&P 500 index twice. Peters most impressive investing successes include undervalued companies such as Taco Bell and Pier 1 Imports before periods of strong market growth.

For the 13 years that Peter Lynch managed the Fidelity Magellan Funds, it was the top-ranked general equity mutual fund in America. 1000 dollars invested in the Magellan fund in 1977 was worth $28,000 when he retired from managing the Magellan fund. In 1990 he decided to take early retirement in order to spend more time with his family, and by that time its value had swollen to $14billion. He is the only manager that has ever run such a large fund, so successfully, for so long. Peter continues as a member on the board of trustees of the Fidelity Group of funds and also writes a column for Worth magazine.

After Peter retired he wrote two books on stock selection, “One Up on Wall Street” in 1989 and “Beating the Street” in 1994. Both of which are considered essential reading for any serious investor. Peter has found many of his big investments  when not in his office - instead found them when out with his family, driving around or shopping at the mall. Peter believes the individual investor is able to do this too. Peter is adamant that small investors can research stocks better than most professionals, and make smarter decisions about what to buy because they are often in better positions to spot potentially profitable investments early. They are also free to act independently, rather than be constrained by committees, trustees. Peter Lynch's favorite investment principle is "Invest in what you know" popularizing the concept of "local knowledge."

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