Ever since the inception of the stock market, investors have gained and lost vast amounts of money. Some amassed fortunes, while others were not so lucky.
Although many traders have earned massive profits in the stock market, a few went ahead and changed the mechanics of trading as we know it today. The experience, knowledge and understanding of market movements made them famous. Every trader should know about them and learn about the strategies that made them successful.
Below is a list of the six most successful traders of all time.
1. Jesse Livermore
Considered one of the pioneers of modern trading, Jesse Livermore was famous for making massive profits and losses in the stock market. He was born into a poor family in 1877 but later ran away at the age of fourteen. Jesses started trading at the age of fifteen and soon became famous because of accurate mathematical calculations, risk-taking appetite, and understanding of market emotions.
Among the most popular trades performed by Livermore, the shorting of stocks before the San Francisco earthquake in 1906 and the Great Depression of 1929 are pretty prominent. These examples are quoted even today to caution modern traders of the risks of seeking larger gains than having risk-free yet consistent returns.
Jesse Livermore incurred huge debt in subsequent years after the 1930s and eventually killed himself in 1940 by suicide.
2. George Soros
Known as “the man who broke the Bank of England,” George Soros is one of the greatest forex traders of all time alive today. His prediction of the devaluation of the British Pound in the year 1992, which led to him short selling it, earned him a whopping profit of $1 billion.
George Soros was born in 1930 in Budapest and was a holocaust survivor. He has a bachelor’s and master’s degree from the London School of Business in philosophy. His early career was as an arbitrage trader before eventually setting up the Soros Fund Management. He is also a philanthropist and political activist and has donated a large portion of his profits to various causes.
3. Paul Tudor Jones
Paul Tudor Jones is the founder of Tudor Investment company, one of the largest hedge funds in the world. He is well known for making his money in the 1987 market crash (also known as Black Monday), where he shorted multiple stocks and made a profit in excess of $100 million. He had also served as the chairman of the New York Stock Exchange five years after the incident.
The success of Jones was attributed to the mapping of a similar pattern of the 1987 market with that of 1929. He decided to short sell his stocks based on his understanding of the technical analysis of the companies trading in the stock market.
Paul Tudor Jones was born in 1954 and began his career as a clerk. He is considered an expert on global macro investing, which resulted in the exponential growth of his hedge fund company.
4. John Paulson
The 1955-born American billionaire John Paulson is regarded as one of the most prominent names in high finance in recent history. He is known for shorting the US real estate market in 2007 when he put his bet against the mortgage-backed securities prevalent in the real estate sectors. He invested heavily in the credit default swaps and made more than $3.5 billion in the trade.
John Paulson completed his education in Business Studies from the New York University and later earned his MBA from Harvard Business School. He had many philanthropic ventures as well and donates generously to causes related to child development.
The movie called “The Big Short” was strongly influenced by the life of John Paulson and the incident of shorting the real estate market.
5. Jim Rogers
Jim Rogers is a Singapore-based American investor and financial commentator. He is known mainly for his long-term holdings on the back of a bearish US market and earning almost 4200% on his investment. He is also famous for his long-term association with George Soros. He is currently the co-founder of the Soros Fund Management and the Quantum Fund with Soros.
Born in 1942, Rogers completed his bachelor’s education from Yale University and later completed a double bachelor’s from the University of Oxford. He is the author of several financial books read by thousands of traders and investors.
6. Steven Cohen
Steven Cohen is the 30th richest person in the US and is the founder of a hedge fund known as Point72 Asset Management. He made his fortune primarily through equity trading through his hedge fund establishment known as SAC. However, he was infamously charged on the count of insider trading and had to pay a $1.8 billion fine. He eventually closed the SAC.
Born in 1956, Cohen completed his degree a economics from the University of Pennsylvania in 1978. He had worked as a trader for 14 years before opening SAC Capital Advisors in 1992. Other than trading, Steven Cohen is the owner of the Major League Baseball team New York Mets.
Steven Cohen is also an avid art collector. His art collection is valued at more than $1 billion, containing rare masterpieces by renowned artists worldwide.
There is no specific way of being successful in the stock market. Every trader, as mentioned above, had their own strategy and trading technique that helped them become pioneers in trading. Yet, all of them had one thing in common – understanding the market. Once you start understanding market movements, make solid predictions, and invest in the right places, maybe you could rise to the top too.