Peter Lynch’s success at the Fidelity Magellan Fund shows index funds don’t always win. In his 13-year tenure from 1977 to 1990 he had an annualised return of 29.2%, more than twice that of the S&P 500. And this was not a small fund — it peaked at $12bn — nor did it get lucky with a handful of stocks. It held 450 shares, sometimes as many as 900.

Lynch should be a hero to any financial journalist as his analysis made every share interesting. It would never occur to him not to kick the tyres before buying a share, which didn’t mean poring over a spreadsheet — not that spreadsheets existed in their present form then...

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