Peter Lynch (born January 19, 1944) is an American investor, mutual fund manager, and philanthropist. As the manager of the Magellan Fund at Fidelity Investments between 1977 and 1990, Lynch averaged a 29.2% annual return, consistently more than doubling the S&P 500 stock market index and making it the best-performing mutual fund in the world. During his 13 year tenure, assets under management increased from 18 million dollars to 14 billion dollars .
|Born||January 19, 1944|
Newton, Massachusetts, U.S.
|Alma mater||Boston College (BA) |
The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania (MBA)
|Occupation||Investor, mutual fund manager, philanthropist|
|Employer||Fidelity Investments (1966 - 1990)|
|Known for||Managing the Magellan Fund|
|Net worth||US$352 million (March 2006)|
|Title||Chairman of the Lynch Foundation|
|Spouse(s)||Carolyn Lynch (d. 2015)|
He also co-authored a number of books and papers on investing and coined a number of well known mantras of modern individual investing strategies, such as Invest in what you know and ten bagger. Lynch is consistently described as a "legend" by the financial media for his performance record, and was called "legendary" by Jason Zweig in his 2003 update of Benjamin Graham's book, The Intelligent Investor.
Peter Lynch was born on January 19, 1944 in Newton, Massachusetts. In 1951, when Lynch was seven, his father was diagnosed with cancer. He died three years later, and Lynch's mother had to work to support the family. Lynch reports that from his early teens he worked as a caddy to help support the family. During Lynch's time as a sophomore at Boston College, he used his savings to buy 100 shares of Flying Tiger Airlines at US$8 per share. The stock would later rise to $80 per share, profits from which helped pay for his education.
In 1965, Lynch graduated from Boston College (BC) where he had studied history, psychology and philosophy. He later earned a Master of Business Administration from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1968.
In 1966, Lynch was hired as an intern with Fidelity Investments partly because he had been caddying for Fidelity's president, D. George Sullivan, (among others) at Brae Burn Country Club in Newton, Massachusetts. He initially covered the paper, chemical, and publishing industries, and when he returned after a two-year Army stint he was hired permanently in 1969. This time Lynch was charged with following the textiles, metals, mining, and chemicals industries, eventually becoming Fidelity's director of research from 1974 to 1977.
Fidelity Magellan FundEdit
In 1977, Lynch was named head of the then obscure Magellan Fund which had 18 million dollars in assets. By the time Lynch resigned as a fund manager in 1990, the fund had grown to more than 14 billion dollars in assets with more than 1000 individual stock positions. Taking over when Magellan was a small fund, Lynch had no restrictions on what assets he could buy (other than laws, such as an SEC-enforced federal law that prohibits investment company funds that are registered as "diversified" from holding more than 5% of total portfolio assets in a single company at time of purchase ). He focused on individual companies rather than any overarching strategy, starting with large US companies and gradually shifting emphasis to smaller and international stocks.
From 1977 until 1990, the Magellan fund averaged a 29.2% annual return and as of 2003 had the best 20-year return of any mutual fund ever. Lynch's achieved dollar successes in a range of stocks including (by order of profit achieved - source is Beating the Street): Fannie Mae, Ford, Philip Morris, MCI, Volvo, General Electric, General Public Utilities, Student Loan Marketing, Kemper, and Lowe's.
Lynch has written (with co-author John Rothchild) three texts on investing, including One Up on Wall Street (ISBN 0671661035), Beating the Street (ISBN 0671759159), and Learn to Earn. The last-named book was written for beginning investors of all ages, mainly teenagers. In essence, One Up served as theory while Beating the Street is application. One Up lays out Lynch's investment technique including chapters devoted to stock classifications, the two-minute drill, famous numbers, and designing a portfolio. Most of Beating the Street consists of an extensive stock by stock discussion of Lynch's 1992 Barron's Magazine selections, essentially providing an illustration of the concepts previously discussed. As such, both books represent study material for investors of any knowledge level or ability.
Lynch also wrote a series of investment articles for Worth magazine that expand on many of the concepts and companies mentioned in the books.
I’ve found that when the market’s going down and you buy funds wisely, at some point in the future you will be happy. You won’t get there by reading ‘Now is the time to buy.'— Lynch on market movements
Lynch coined some of the best-known mantras of modern individual investing strategies.
His most famous investment principle is, "Invest in what you know," popularizing the economic concept of "local knowledge". Since most people tend to become expert in certain fields, applying this basic "invest in what you know" principle helps individual investors find good undervalued stocks. Lynch uses this principle as a starting point for investors. He has also often said that the individual investor is more capable of making money from stocks than a fund manager, because they are able to spot good investments in their day-to-day lives before Wall Street. Throughout his two classic investment primers, he has outlined many of the investments he found when not in his office. For example, in One Up Lynch explains how he invested in Dunkin' Donuts not after reading about the company in The Wall Street Journal, but after being impressed by their coffee as a customer. Assuming others would be similarly impressed, he then studied the company's financial status and decided to invest in Dunkin' Donuts, which proved one of the best-performing stocks he ever bought. Lynch believes the individual investor is able to make similar smart investing choices.
Lynch has stated in One Up on Wall Street that his undergraduate studies in philosophy and logic were more important to his career than the math or finance he studied for his MBA. At Wharton he came to believe that the two prevailing investing theories in academia, the random walk hypothesis and the efficient market hypothesis, were contradictory. The concepts taught by professors at school were regularly disproved by professionals during his internship at Fidelity. He thus came to rely more on practitioners than theoreticians: "It seemed to me that what was supposed to help you succeed in the investment business, could only help you fail ... Quantitative analysis taught me that the things I saw happening at Fidelity couldn't really be happening."
Lynch has also argued against market timing, stating: "Far more money has been lost by investors preparing for corrections or trying to anticipate corrections than has been lost in the corrections themselves."
Lynch popularized the stock investment strategy “GARP” (Growth At A Reasonable Price), which is a hybrid stock-picking approach that balances Growth investing potential with the discipline of Value investing. Many well-known funds now follow the GARP model, ranging from equity funds such as Fidelity Investments Fidelity Contrafund (FCNTX) and Lemma Senbet Fund, to index funds such as Russell Indexes iShares Russell 1000 Growth Index.
He also coined the phrase "ten bagger" in a financial context. This refers to an investment which is worth ten times its original purchase price, and comes from baseball where the number of "bags" or "bases" that a batter can run to is a measure of the success of that runner's hit. A baseball player who hits a home run will pass all four bases, and so such a hit is sometimes called a four-bagger. Similarly, a baseball double hit is sometimes called a two bagger. As Lynch wrote in One Up on Wall Street, “In my business a fourbagger is nice, but a tenbagger is the fiscal equivalent of two home runs and a double.” 
Though he continues to work part time as vice chairman of Fidelity Management & Research Co., the investment adviser arm of Fidelity Investments, spending most of his time mentoring young analysts, Peter Lynch focuses a great deal of time on philanthropy. He said he views philanthropy as a form of investment. He said he prefers to give money to support ideas that he thinks can spread, such as First Night, the New Year's Eve festival that began in Boston in 1976 and has inspired similar events in more than 200 other communities, and City Year, a community service program founded in Boston in 1988 that now operates in 29 cities across the U.S.
The Lynches give money primarily in five ways: as individuals, through the Lynch Foundation, through a Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund, and through two charitable trusts.
The Lynches have made gifts as individuals, donating 10 million dollars to Peter Lynch's alma mater, Boston College. In turn, BC named the Lynch School of Education and Human Development after the family.
The Lynch Foundation, valued at 125 million dollars , gave away 8 million dollars in 2013 and has made 80 million dollars in grants since its inception. The Foundation supports education, religious organizations, cultural and historic organizations, and hospitals and medical research. Lynch was inducted into the Junior Achievement U.S. Business Hall of Fame in 1991.
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- Peter Lynch and John Rothschild, Beating the Street Simon & Schuster; Revised edition (May 25, 1994) 0671891634
- "Stock quotes, financial tools, news and analysis - MSN Money". Articles.moneycentral.msn.com. 2017-01-31. Archived from the original on 2009-02-10. Retrieved 2017-02-23.
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- One Up on Wall Street, p. 34
- As quoted in "The Wisdom of Great Investors: Insights from Some of History's Greatest Investment Minds, by Davis Advisers, p. 7
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- Lynch, Peter (1989). One Up On Wall Street. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster Paperbacks. p. 32. ISBN 978-0-671-66103-8.
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