Who is your financial Idol?

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Who is your financial Idol?

Post by simba »

A short but an interesting article at nctimes
So, who is the real "Financial Idol"? I'm going to have to go with Bogle. I admire Buffett for his success, appreciate Lynch for the way he makes investing so simple, but believe that Bogle has done more for the average investor than anyone else.
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Taylor Larimore
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My financial idol

Post by Taylor Larimore »

Hi Simba:
So, who is the real "Financial Idol"?
I am glad you asked. The answer is easy:

.....................John C. Bogle....................

Best wishes.
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Post by Gentex »


Not just for the wealth he has amassed, and now pledged to give away (which is truly an amazing feat). From all I've read by and about him, he is seemingly supernaturally rational in his thinking about finance. He is unflappable and immune to outside distractions.

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Post by Betelgeuse »

Who ever discovered:

FV = PV ( 1+i )^n
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Post by unclemick »

The Norwegian widow - mythical of course.

First among the second team - Bogle, then Ben (Graham), and Bernstein - most of the time - wasn't overly thrilled with Four Pillars(ok) but liked Birth of Plenty better.

heh heh heh - a little tongue in cheek :wink:
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Post by White Coat Investor »

Benjamin Graham, John Bogle, Warren Buffett, John Montgomery, Bill Schultheis are all way up there with me, but the tops has got to go to the good doctor, Bill Bernstein.
1) Invest you must 2) Time is your friend 3) Impulse is your enemy | 4) Basic arithmetic works 5) Stick to simplicity 6) Stay the course
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Paul Farrell and Paul Merriman

Post by bob90245 »

"Idol" is probably too strong a word. But I owe a huge debt of gratitude to Paul Farrell and Paul Merriman for setting me on the path Toward Slice and Dice.

Edit 1: Added link to Amazon.com
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Post by YDNAL »


I'm sorry, wrong poll.
John C Bogle has probably done more to help investors generate wealth than any other person on the face of the Earth. As the founder of the Vanguard family of mutual funds and the father of index investing, Bogle has preached the importance of being an economical investor. Bogle figured out that the two biggest enemies of investors are expenses and taxes. He created the first Standard & Poor's 500 fund that reduced fees to a fraction and kept taxes low by avoiding trading activity. Today, it is the largest fund in the industry. Bogle is proud to say that he is despised by people who manage money but loved by the people who invest the stuff.
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Nick cockroft (an active member on this forum)

Post by bnath001 »

helped me a lot and educated me on numerous aspects of saving and investing for retirement. I owe him a lot.
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Swedroe, Bogle, Buffett, and Arnott

Post by docneil88 »

My financial idols are Larry Swedroe, John Bogle, Warren Buffett, and Robert Arnott.

Larry, I've learned so much from your interactions and debates with me and others on Diehards forums. Thank you. Neil
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Post by bnath001 »

Sorry, bad reply earlier.

Nick Cockroft (an active member on this forum):

He helped me a lot and educated me on numerous aspects of saving and investing for retirement. I owe him a lot. He pointed me to right books and resources and it changed my perspective on investing for retirement quite a bit.

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John Norstad

Post by AnimalCrackers »

John Norstad

At fewer than 7,000 words, "Investing in Total Markets" is hard to refute and easy to understand, even for me.

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my vote

Post by Petrocelli »

Jack Bogle, and there is no one in close second.
Petrocelli (not the real Rico, but just a fan)
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Post by SpringMan »

Many come to mind, Taylor Larimore, Mel Lindauer, Michael LeBoeuf, Jack Bogle, Larry Swedroe, amd Bill Bernstein, not necessarily in that order.
Best Wishes, SpringMan
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Post by bzboy »

Graham, Buffett, Fama, John Montgomery...

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bogle, Bogle, BOGLE

Post by lucky7 »

A reason Bogle stands out is due to the fact he personally sacrificed mega bucks to help the average investor. He withstood ridicule ("Bogle's folly" was the initial term to describe Vanguard's S&P 500 index) and persevered, and Vanguard unlike any other fund of its day stood without conflict for the mutual fund investor. There are other great investors perhaps, or educators but no one, in my opinion, who cared, achieved and sacrificed so much for the individual investor.

Scotty, beam me up.
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Post by nick22 »

Graham (value investing) and Bogle (low expenses and index access for the common man) and maybe Markowitz (MPT) for their very unique contributions to the foundations of investing in the 21st century in the U.S.

I love reading Peter and William Bernstein for high-minded concepts and ideas, and the Bogleheads and Larry for practical and understandable "common sense" advice.
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Post by Teetlebaum »

Me. I'm my own idol in other matters, too. 8)
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Post by jebmke »

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Post by watchnerd »

Richard Nixon.

No, really. For taking us off the gold standard. So many things we take for granted today wouldn't be possible if we were still shackled to gold.
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Post by sterjs »

I wouldn't say I have an idol, but my favorite financial author is Nassim Taleb.
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Post by wingnutty »


not just because of his financial genius, but because he is so down to earth and genuine also. For someone with as much wealth and power as he has amassed, he is truely a 'everyday guy'. Now that he is really starting to give his wealth away he is an even greater role model to others.
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Post by Robert T »

I don’t have an idol but I respect and am thankful to the many people who have helped get me on a path that greatly increases the likelihood of achieving my family financial objectives (college education & retirement needs). While I have learned much from many posters, the following people have helped me the most (I have tried to honest…and provided some books and articles that have had the greatest impact on my investment decisions):

Ordered by subject:

1. On setting financial goals (and linking these to required savings and investment return) 2. On investment policy 3. On structuring exposure to risk factors 4. On diversification across core global asset classes 5. On minimizing costs Hopefully what I have learned from the above will have “tremendous staying power” and “durability over the years”.

A sincere thank you to all. Maybe the above links will be useful for others.

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James Simons

Post by jaybard »

-Jay 8
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perhaps not an idol...

Post by Jazztonight »

I'll put John Bogle at the top of my list, too.

But here's something we should think about:

What does an immensely wealthy person do with acquired wealth once attained?

Bill & Melinda Gates have put his vast wealth to work making a difference and changing the world. You can hate him if you want, but the man is truly affecting the world in a positive manner:

"In 2000, Gates founded the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, a charitable organization, with his wife. Bill Gates Sr. has credited David Rockefeller's generosity and extensive philanthropy as an influence on his son. The two of them met several times with him and have modeled their giving in part on the Rockefeller family's philanthropic focus on global problems being ignored by governments and other organizations.

The foundation's grants have provided funds for college scholarships for under-represented minorities, AIDS prevention, diseases prevalent in third world countries, and other causes. In 2000, the Gates Foundation endowed the University of Cambridge with $210 million for the Gates Cambridge Scholarships. The Foundation has also pledged over $7 billion to its various causes, including $1 billion to the United Negro College Fund. According to a 2004 Forbes magazine article, Gates gave away over $29 billion to charities from 2000 onwards. These donations are usually cited as sparking a substantial change in attitudes towards philanthropy among the very rich, with philanthropy becoming the norm."

As you know, Warren Buffett has pledged his wealth to the Gates:

"In June 2006, he (Buffett) made a commitment to give away his fortune to charity, with 83% of it going to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The donation amounts to approximately $30 billion. Buffett's donation is said to be the largest in U.S. history. At the time of the announcement the donation was enough to more than double the size of the foundation."
"What does not destroy me, makes me stronger." Nietzsche
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Post by NAVigator »

Robert T,

Thanks for posting the compilation of useful and informative links. I am in awe of the vast amounts of great investing wisdom. I appreciate the Bogleheads that point me toward resources so that I can learn more.

My idol is Jack Bogle for being a pioneer in the industry and recognizing the merits of founding a company that can truly benefit the individual investor.

"I was born with nothing and I have most of it left."
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Subject lines are too small, so nobody will see this!

Post by jimgour »

I can't believe you asked that question on this forum.

It BOGLEs the mind!


PS John Bogle, of course!
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Post by Adrian Nenu »

Jack Bogle - no contest.

Honorable mention to Profs. Markowitz and Sharpe for their MPT work which is the foundation of modern finance.

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Post by yobria »

Bernstein. If I had to pick a second, it would be gummy (Peter Ponzo).

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Post by xenial »

Bogle - for his lifelong efforts on behalf of small investors

Best wishes,
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Post by Karl »

I'll go with Bogle, a guy who's made a lifetime career out of the very simple concept of "costs matter".

Despite the amazing simplicity of the idea, it's still an idea foreign to most investment firms.
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Post by dcd »

John Bogle due to his persistent message concerning the "relentless rules of humble arithmetic".
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Post by Random Musings »

Bogle - without a doubt - who reduced investing costs for the consumer - the major driver for for keeping dollars in their pockets - and also marketed and popularized passive (index) funds - which win in the long-run.

The others are good - they allow for futher enhancements in the portfolio to push towards the efficient frontier with respect to asset allocation.

But low costs and passive win, IMHO.

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Post by Mel Lindauer »

Jack Bogle, without a doubt. I can't even think of a close second.

Best regards to all,

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Post by United »

Not Bogle. (*gasp*)
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Post by TheDan666 »

Gonna have to switch things up and pick economist David Ricardo. His theory of comparative advantage is the foundation for all of modern day world trade.
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Post by nick in ohio »

A Nod to Laura !

She seems to go out of her way to help everyone and does a very thorough job .

For all around posting I'd have to go with ( Petrocelli ) . He is into eveything !
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Post by shadowrings »

Bogle, Bernstein

and 3 of our own

Mel, Taylor and Laura


(others but those are the ones that pop to mind immediately)
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Not really an "Idol"...

Post by 1210sda »

Not really an "Idol", but someone who I have great respect for.

Roger Gibson

(Asset Allocation: Balancing Financial Risk)
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Post by Kevinm1986 »

John C. Bogle has to be number one. He pioneered two important things: index investing and low-cost mutual funds. Using low-cost index funds will do far more for my wealth than anything else, so Bogle is number one on my list. Without him, we may never have had either--that's quite a scary thought.
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Post by Elysium »

There are many others, but when I have to pick one it must be Jack Bogle, he taught us the most important lesson "costs matter" and he pioneered index funds.

[edited to include index funds]
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That is very easy....

Post by CountryBoy »

In no particular order: Taylor, Mel, Larry, Laura, and Rick. And yes I have read The Book List of what we should read. But the fabulous 5 have taken the concepts and helped us to apply, interpret, and understand what we need. They are a very critical and necessary link in the chain of my understanding the Diehard philosopy.

My thanks to them all.

Barlow Humphreys
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Post by Rick Ferri »

I have two:

Jack Bogle
Warren Buffett

Whatever they say or write is usually worth repeating.

Rick Ferri

Dan Wheeler & the folks at DFA...

Post by jtroutner »

First, thanks to Robert T for mentioning me...I'm flattered.

Wheeler heads the advisor division of DFA...actually he started it by persevering with the people at DFA who were totally committed to the institutional market prior to Dan's efforts. He, like me, came from the dark side (he, Merrill Lynch, me, Smith Barney) and made the very difficult business decisions to swim against the massively powerful Wall Street current.

It's been his foresight and ethical stubbornness that has allowed thousands of investors and $100 billion of assets of normal, everyday investors to benefit from asset class investing and remove themselves from the self-serving, "me first" mentality of the vast majority of stockbrokers, money managers, and independent advisors.

Major kudos to Dan (who, by the way, is donating a lot of money and time to help orphaned children in Guatemala, among other things).

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So Many Idols That It is Not Fair to Single Out One

Post by mur44 »

Bogle, Taylor Larimore, Bill Bernstein, Peter Bernstein
(Not related to the Diehard Bill Bernstein), Larry Swedroe,
Rick Ferri, Jonathan Clements (Wall Street Journal),
Avram Karel of NY/NJ/CT Diehards Coordinator,
and many many others.

I visit the Diehard forums everyday and I learn
something new everyday.

I am hoping that Jack Bogle would answer my
question at the forthcoming Diehards VI conference.
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