Mr. Bogle recently had an article titled The Clash of the Cultures published in The Journal of Portfolio Management.
August 27, 2010
To Principals and Veterans:
October 8, 2010
To the Veterans and Principals:
I’m attaching a fun speech I gave last evening at the JFK Library in Boston at the 50th aIll1iversary of the Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation. (It’s a long story!) Entitled “How Calvin Coolidge Could Guide Us Today,” it includes a number of historical references that I think you’ll enjoy.
Also attached is an article from Bloomberg Business Week on Vanguard’s becoming the largest firm in our industry, essentially a summary of a much more extensive article on Bloomberg.com. Since this article is laced with some wonderful quotes from independent sources that I’m sure you’ll enjoy, I’ve included it as well.
Not to be too picky, but the story substantially underscores our advantage in asset size, stated as Vanguard $1.31 trillion, Fidelity $1.24 trillion. In fact, the totals are Vanguard $1.39 trillion, Fidelity $1.17 trillion-an edge of $220 billion. Excluding money market funds and counting only stock and bond funds, the totals are: Vanguard $1.22 trillion, Fidelity $730 billion, a staggering edge of almost $500 billion.
Numbers are mere numbers, and size is only size. (And don’t ever forget that “the bigger they are the harder they fall.”) What remains important are the basic human values and the simple investment strategies established at our founding, which–despite the challenges engendered by our electrifying growth to industry preeminence-remain the primary basis for the enormous trust that investors have placed in all of us.
October 28, 2010
To Principals and Veterans,
While the attached speech about Vanguard’s ascent to industry leadership was presented to the FUSE Network Research Conference on the future of asset management and the distribution of marketing resources, it occurs to me that it would likely be of even greater interest to our Vanguard crew.
So I’m sending along “Uneasy Lies the Head that Wears the Crown,” some reflections on the lessons of industry leadership, with particular attention to the three past leaders during our industry’s 76-year history. Each held the crown with surprising durability, lasting for about 25 years before their decline and fall.
The obvious question: Will Vanguard’s reign be as durable? Or will it last even longer? Read on.
P.S. I’ll also be posting the speech on my eBlog – www.johncbogle.com
February 16, 2011
To: Principals and Veterans
I’m sure you’ll enjoy these recent “items of interest” that are attached.
A. No, it wasn’t I who wrote this ringing endorsement of indexing in the current (January-February) issue of The Financial Analysts Journal. It was respected (and totally objective) academic Mark Kritzman, CFA, who lays out-in just three pungent pages-something all of us at Vanguard know: “Elevating wmecessary expenses is the most reliable path to higher returns.”
B. A similar philosophy is described in Financial Times, where journalist Tom Stabile writes: “Investing passively should (be) the norm … and active management should come with a brighter warning sticker.”
C. A perfectly marvelous letter from a long-time Vanguard shareholder. (I get at least one letter like this just about every day.) Interestingly, this 1999 investor hit those two big market bumps along the way, but his original $890,000 is now worth $1,023,000, after $443,000 in withdrawals. (He’s now moving to a more conservative allocation than the original 20 percent in our bond funds). Investing his life’s savings at Vanguard was, he writes, “the best decision of my life.”
D. Alas, a bit self-serving. I’m so pleased that my essay “The Fiduciary Principle” has won the Bernstein Fabozzi/Jacobs Levy 2010 award for Outstanding Article in The Journal ofPortfolio Management. This comes as a nice “twofer,” since my earlier essay “A Question So Important …” won the award in 2009. (You may recall that my essays “Black Monday and Black Swans” and “Markets in Crisis” won Graham and Dodd awards at the Financial Analysts Journal in 2008 and 2009, respectively, so I’ve got quite a remarkable streak going.) I believe that the constant pounding home to financial professionals of the flaws in the markets and the importance of traditional investment principles has been a major asset to our firm. I hope you agree.
April 12, 2011
To: Principals and Veterans,
Text of my brief (for me) remarks on receiving the Tiburon CEO Summit Award, in which I review our industry position and describe the amazing and unpredictable events that led to our creation, without anyone of which Vanguard would not exist today.
A nice presentation of my op-ed for the Financial Times of London, describing the harsh realities of investing as compared to the bright illusions created by Wall Street ( one of the major themes of Don’t Count on It!).
A copy of the cover and the text on the inside flap of a new book, The House that Bogle Built: How John Bogle and Vanguard Reinvented the Mutual Fund Industry. It begins with a revision of John Bogle and the Vanguard Experiment, published in 1996, and then follows with a chronicle of the past 15 years. While it includes interviews with me, Bill McNabb, and others, the opinions expressed are the author’s own. While I have not read it, I’ve heard the book includes some controversial issues. I believe it’s now in the book stores, as well as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.
Thanks to each one of you for making this place such a fine haven for our clients, especially in these unpredictable and volatile markets.