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11 Greatest Investors of Modern History and How They Made Their Fortunes

Throughout history, there have been many great investors. Some investors made their riches by investing in the new technologies of the times, like the internet or locomotives, while others focused on undervalued matured businesses. Here’s our list of the greatest investors in recent history.

Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett is the most famous investor of modern times and is known as the CEO and chairman of Berkshire Hathaway. His approach focuses on a long-term value approach. Buffett’s best-performing investments include Coca-Cola (KO), Apple (AAPL), Wells Fargo (WFC), and American Express (AXP).

Carl Icahn

Carl Icahn is a famous activist investor and corporate raider known for high-profile and sometimes controversial deals. For example, he bought a significant stake in Netflix (NFLX) in 2012 when they faced challenges and pushed for changes that rewarded huge profits. Icahn has also made substantial profits with Apple (AAPL), TWA (airlines), and Blockbuster (video) in prior decades.

Peter Lynch

Peter Lynch is a legendary fund manager who ran the Fidelity Magellan Fund for 13 years and delivered an average annual return of 29%. The fund became one of the largest mutual funds in the world under his oversight and invested in companies he believed were undervalued in the market. Lynch’s best performing investments include Ford (F), Wal-Mart (WMT), Philip Morris (PM), and Dunkin’ Donuts (DNKN).

John Paulson

John Paulson is a famous hedge fund manager known for correctly betting against the US housing market right before the subprime mortgage-led financial crisis of 2008. Paulson’s hedge fund, Paulson & Co., made over $15 billion in 2007.

Ray Dalio

Ray Dalio is a hedge fund manager and founder of Bridgewater Associates. Dalio has recently written several books on investing “principals,” discussing the cyclical natures of the debt markets and global economies. Dalio focuses on managing risk using macro strategies. For instance, his flagship Pure Alpha Fund returned 9% in 2008, while many other funds suffered significant losses.

Benjamin Graham

Benjamin Graham originated the modern value investing strategy, later followed by successors such as Warren Buffet and Peter Lynch. Graham wrote the masterpiece book “The Intelligent Investor” and is most famous for his AT&T (T) and GEICO investments.

Charles Schwab

Charles Schwab made his name synonymous with low-cost brokerage services as he pioneered the discount investing and securities trading industry. Schwab got his start after launching an investment newsletter but made most of his fortune through the establishment of Charles Schwab Corporation.

Paul Tudor Jones

Paul Tudor Jones founded Tudor Investment Corporation, a hedge fund famous for analyzing macroeconomic trends. Jones is most famous for correctly predicting the stock market crash of 1987 and has since been considered one of the most influential traders of modern times.

George Soros

George Soros is a legendary investor and one of the first hedge fund managers in history. He is known best for taking successful positions on international currencies, most notably betting against the British pound and the Thai baht in the nineties. He’s also profited handsomely, betting on the US dollar and gold after the financial crisis.

Stanley Druckenmiller

Stanley Druckenmiller is a famous hedge fund manager who worked with George Soros as a manager of the Quantum Fund for 12 years. Druckenmiller’s track record includes years of average annual returns of around 30%, despite significant losses during the 2008 financial crisis. He is known for early investments in Microsoft (MSFT) and Dell (DELL) companies.

Jack Bogle

Jack Bogle founded Vanguard, one of the leading low-cost fund managers and brokerages. Bogle made his fortune in the investment industry, working at Wellington Management Company for over 20 years before going on to found Vanguard. Bogle is credited with creating the first index fund.

Josh Dudick

Josh is a financial expert with over 15 years of experience on Wall Street as a senior market strategist and trader. His career has spanned from working on the New York Stock Exchange floor to investment management and portfolio trading at Citibank, Chicago Trading Company, and Flow Traders.

Josh graduated from Cornell University with a degree from the Dyson School of Applied Economics & Management at the SC Johnson College of Business. He has held multiple professional licenses during his career, including FINRA Series 3, 7, 24, 55, Nasdaq OMX, Xetra & Eurex (German), and SIX (Swiss) trading licenses. Josh served as a senior trader and strategist, business partner, and head of futures in his former roles on Wall Street.

Josh's work and authoritative advice have appeared in major publications like Nasdaq, Forbes, The Sun, Yahoo! Finance, CBS News, Fortune, The Street, MSN Money, and Go Banking Rates. Josh currently holds areas of expertise in investing, wealth management, capital markets, taxes, real estate, cryptocurrencies, and personal finance.

Josh currently runs a wealth management business and investment firm. Additionally, he is the founder and CEO of Top Dollar, where he teaches others how to build 6-figure passive income with smart money strategies that he uses professionally.