|May 8, 1929
|Source of Wealth:
|Investor, Business Magnate
|Founding the Vanguard Group
John C. (Jack) Bogle is the founder and retired chief executive of the Vanguard Group. He created the world’s first retail index mutual fund. Bogle also wrote several classic finance books including The Little Book of Common Sense Investing and Enough: True Measures of Money, Business, and Life.
John Bogle has many followers and admires at personal finance and investing website Bogleheads.org. Followers of John Bogle’s investment philosophy admire him not just for his eloquence in tirelessly speaking and writing about the importance of fees and advantages of indexing, but in his conscious decision in the creation of The Vanguard Group not to enrich himself at the expense of consumers.
John (Jack) Bogle was born on May 8, 1929 in Verona, New Jersey. During the Great Depression, his family had to sell their home when they lost the inheritance. Bogle attended Manasquan high school on the New Jersey shore and transferred to the prestigious Blair Academy on work scholarships.
In 1947, Bogle graduated from Blair Academy cum laude and got accepted to Princeton University where he decided to study economics and investment. During his university years, Bogle was determined to examine the subject of mutual fund industry that had not been analyzed before. Bogle spent his junior and senior year working on his thesis “The Economic Role of the Investment Company”. Bogle graduated from Princeton University magna cum laude in Economics in 1951.
After graduating from Princeton in 1951, Jack Bogle went to banking and investments as a career. He was hired to manage Wellington Fund by company founder Walter Morgan. Morgan said that “Bogle knows more about the fund business than we do”.
Afterward Morgan transferred management of the company to Bogle in 1965 by naming him executive vice president. After successfully climbing through the ranks, he was named chairman of Wellington, but was later fired due to a corporate dispute on January 23, 1974.
In May 1, 1975, Bogle founded the Vanguard Company which is now one of the most respected and successful companies in the investment world. Bogle managed to turn Vanguard into a giant company which made Fortune Magazine in 1999 to name Bogle as “one of the four investment giants of the twentieth century”.
In August 1976, Bogle created the first index mutual fund available to the general public, Vanguard 500 Index Fund. Until 1976, investors had no choice but to go with actively managed funds, often paying commissions over 5%. With the launch of Vanguard 500 Index Fund, Jack Bogle gave all of us a new way to invest for our future and retirement. Nowadays, investors have more than $4.7 trillion riding on Bogle’s investing philosophy using index mutual and exchange traded funds.
John Bogle led Vanguard from 1975 to 1996. He remained a senior chairman of the firm until 2000 when, upon reaching mandatory retirement age, he stepped down from any management role. After retiring he founded the Bogle Financial Markets Research Center.
Bogle himself has said that he could have been a billionaire had he taken Vanguard public. Instead, he chose the mutually-owned structure to align incentives with his investors.
While not as rich as other mutual fund titans, Mr. Bogle told The New York Times that his own wealth is in the “low double-digit millions.” Most of it is in Vanguard and Wellington mutual funds in which he invested via payroll deduction during his long career.
Personal Finance Quotes from John Bogle
“Simplicity is the master key to financial success.”
“Time is your friend; impulse is your enemy.”
“Learn every day, but especially from the experiences of others. It’s cheaper!”
“You know the rule of 72, divide the number into 72, any number you want, and that’s how long it will take your money to double.”
“In Las Vegas we all know that it’s the croupiers who win. At the race track, it’s those who control the handle who win. State lotteries, does anybody think the participants in the lottery win? No. The state wins.”
“The index fund is a sensible, serviceable method for obtaining the market’s rate of return with absolutely no effort and minimal expense. Index funds eliminate the risks of individual stocks, market sectors and manager selection, leaving only stock market risk.”
John Bogle Personal Finance Video
Financial guru John Bogle, founder of the Vanguard Group, on the simple advice he received at the start of his investing career: “Nobody Knows Nothing”. What is presented as fact is just opinion and investors need to be wary of believing they are smarter than everyone else.
Warren Buffett Talked About Jack Bogle
At Berkshire’s 52nd annual meeting in Omaha, Nebraska on May 6, 2017, billionaire investor Warren Buffett said that Vanguard founder Jack Bogle “has probably done more for the American investor than any man in the country.”
Here’s what the “Oracle of Omaha” described Bogle:
“It was not in the interests of Wall Street to have the development of index funds, because it brought down fees dramatically. When Jack started, very few people, certainly Wall Street did not applaud him. He was the subject of some derision. And now we’re talking trillions when we get into index funds.”
“Jack at a minimum has saved, in the pockets of investors, he’s put tens and tens and tens of billions into their pockets. Thank you on behalf of investors!”
John C. Bogle is worth $80 million. Bogle could easily be a billionaire, but instead he chose to let investors be the owner of Vanguard funds. Bogle founded the Vanguard Group, which has grown to be the largest provider of mutual funds with over $5 trillion in assets under management. We all owe Mr. Bogle our gratitude for helping us get a fair share on Wall Street.
Bogle has opened the low-cost investment to regular people like you and me. Bogle dedicated his whole life to serve investors first. He’s really a great man!