The author marks the 40th anniversary of the creation of the first index mutual fund (now the Vanguard 500 Index Fund) by examining decades of data, which reveal that passive index funds have consistently outperformed their actively managed counterparts.

Editor’s note: This article was reviewed and accepted by Executive Editor Stephen J. Brown.

Author’s note: The views expressed in this essay are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Vanguard’s present management.

Author Information

John C. Bogle is founder and former chief executive of The Vanguard Group and president of Bogle Financial Markets Research Center.

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