John C. Bogle

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For the Scottish portrait miniaturist, see John Bogle (artist).
Jack Clifton Bogle
Born John Clifton Bogle
(1929-05-08) May 8, 1929 (age 86)
Montclair, New Jersey
Nationality American
Alma mater Princeton University (B.A., 1951)
Occupation Businessman, executive
Known for founder of The Vanguard Group
Spouse(s) Eve
Children 6

John Clifton "Jack" Bogle is the founder and retired CEO of The Vanguard Group. His 1999 book Common Sense on Mutual Funds: New Imperatives for the Intelligent Investor became a bestseller and is considered a classic within the investment community.[1][2]

Early life and education[edit]

Born in Montclair, New Jersey,[3] Bogle and his twin brother were raised in nearby Verona.[4] His family was affected by the Great Depression, with his father falling into alcoholism which resulted in his parents' divorce. He attended Blair Academy on a full scholarship, earned his undergraduate degree from Princeton University in 1951, and attended evening and weekend classes at the University of Pennsylvania.[5]


Upon graduation he went to work for Walter L. Morgan at Wellington Management Company.[6] After successfully climbing through the ranks, he was named chairman of Wellington but was later fired for an "extremely unwise" merger that he approved, a poor decision that he considers his biggest mistake, stating, "The great thing about that mistake, which was shameful and inexcusable and a reflection of immaturity and confidence beyond what the facts justified, was that I learned a lot."[7]

In 1974, Bogle founded The Vanguard Group.[8] Under his leadership, the company grew to be the second-largest mutual fund company in the world.[citation needed]

In 1975, influenced by the works of Eugene Fama, Burton Malkiel, and Paul Samuelson, Bogle founded the Vanguard 500 Index Fund as the first index mutual fund available to the general public.[9] He continues to be active in The Vanguard Group.

Bogle is a member of the board of trustees at Blair Academy. He is also an advisory board member of the Millstein Center for Corporate Governance and Performance at the Yale School of Management. Bogle received an honorary doctorate from Princeton University in 2005.

Bogle also serves on the board of trustees of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, a museum dedicated to the U.S. Constitution. He had previously served as chairman of the board from 1999 through 2007. He was named chairman emeritus in January 2007, when former president George H. W. Bush was named chairman.

Investment strategy[edit]

Bogle is known for his insistence, in numerous media appearances and in writing, on the superiority of index funds over traditional actively managed mutual funds. He contends that it is folly to attempt to pick actively managed mutual funds and expect their performance to beat a low-cost index fund over a long period of time, after accounting for the fees that actively managed funds charge.

Bogle argues for an approach to investing defined by simplicity and common sense. Below are his eight basic rules for investors:[10]

  • Select low-cost index funds
  • Consider carefully the added costs of advice
  • Do not overrate past fund performance
  • Use past performance to determine consistency and risk
  • Beware of stars (as in, star mutual fund managers)
  • Beware of asset size
  • Don't own too many funds
  • Buy your fund portfolio - and hold it

Awards and distinctions[edit]

  • Named one of the investment industry's four "Giants of the 20th Century" by Fortune magazine in 1999.
  • Awarded the Woodrow Wilson Award from Princeton University for "distinguished achievement in the Nation's service" (1999).
  • Named one of the "world's 100 most powerful and influential people" by Time magazine in 2004.[11]
  • Institutional Investor's Lifetime Achievement Award (2004).[12][13]

Personal life[edit]

Bogle and his wife Eve have six children and are grandparents. They reside in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.



  1. ^ David Brancaccio (October 10, 2003). "John Bogle". NOW on PBS. 
  2. ^ Scott Burns (March 13, 2010). "A visit with John Bogle". Seattle Times. 
  3. ^ About John C. Bogle, The Vanguard Group, January 2013. Accessed October 18, 2015. "Mr. Bogle was born in Montclair, New Jersey, on May 8, 1929."
  4. ^ John Bogle, American National Business Hall of Fame. Accessed October 18, 2015. "John C. 'Jack' Bogle and his twin brother, David, were born on May 8, 1929. The family at that time lived in the fashionable bedroom community of Verona, New Jersey."
  5. ^
  6. ^ Slater, Robert. John Bogle and the Vanguard experiment : One Man's Quest to Transform the Mutual Fund Industry. Chicago: Irwin Professional Pub., 1997. (ISBN 0786305592)
  7. ^ Boyle, Matthew (December 17, 2007). "Fortune Magazine interview". CNN. Retrieved 2007-12-17. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ Amy Barrett and Jeffrey M. Laderman (January 7, 1999). "That's Why They Call It Vanguard". Business Week. 
  10. ^ Sigma Investing. Review of Common Sense on Mutual Funds.
  11. ^ TIME 100 Most Influential People, 2004
  12. ^ Biography at
  13. ^ World Wide Speakers Group - John Bogle

External links[edit]