Business magnate and investor Warren Buffett famously won a 10-year bet that passive investing via an index tracker fund, which offers exposure to entire stock market indices, would outperform hedge funds that aim to pick individual winners.

Ironically getting rich by investing in individual companies, Buffett argued that with their typical two-and-twenty fee structure — a 2% management fee and 20% of profits — hedge funds could not justify their exorbitant fees. His contention was: with fees included a tracker would outperform a handpicked portfolio over a decade. In SA, the most famous proponent is Magda Wierzycka, founder of Sygnia. Her case is an ironic one, too, as her first business was in hedge funds...

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