Burton Malkiel

Burton Malkiel – a global trading expert

It is fair to say that it was Burton Gordon Malkiel who was responsible for the investment management revolution. His book “A Random Walk on Wall Street” first published in 1973, used new research on asset returns to recommend that all investors use passively managed “index” funds as the basis for their investment portfolios. When he first made this recommendation in The Accidental Walk on Wall Street, there were no publicly available index funds at the time, and investment professionals mercilessly criticized the idea. Today, however, indexing is accepted all over the world. “A Random Walk on Wall Street” has already been reprinted 12 times in 2015. In addition, the book has sold more than 1.5 million copies and has been translated into nine languages. And it is also considered one of the most influential books in the history of the investment management field.
Bert was born in Boston, Massachusetts, on August 28, 1932. He attended Boston State Latin School (1949), Harvard College (1953), and Harvard Graduate School of Business (1955). After a three-year stint as a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army Financial Corps, he took a job with the investment firm Smith, Barney & Co. as an investment banker. Later, in 1964, he received his Ph.D. and went to Princeton.
Burt’s studies focused on understanding the price of financial assets. His first book “The term Structure of Interest Rates,” published by Princeton University Press, focused on the relationship between short-term and long-term interest rates. This was followed by books on international monetary reform, options markets, forecasting, emerging markets, the Chinese economy, and a number of books and articles on investment management. During his career he has published 12 books and over 150 articles in addition to numerous publications and reviews.

Although most of Bert’s published work has focused on the stock market and optimal investment management, he has expertise in virtually all topics. Malkiel has been published in a number of industries, including international monetary agreements, tax and expenditure policy, money and banking, alternative investment markets, and China and other emerging economies. In addition, he has been president of the American Finance Association and has received many lifetime awards from professional investment organizations. He is also a member of the American Philosophical Society.

Burton Malkiel’s Career

During his career, Bert has served on government advisory committees and several corporate boards. He helped the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission revised disclosure rules, and the Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts developed its guidelines for investor education through him. His numerous corporate board memberships have included Prudential Financial (where he chaired the board investment committee), the American Stock Exchange and the Vanguard Group (for whom he lectured on investor education in the US, Latin America, Australia and Asia).
While at Yale, he served on the board of directors of Princeton University Investment Company and served on the investment committees of several philanthropic foundations.
Burt taught major courses in macroeconomics, corporate finance and investment markets at Princeton, as well as graduate courses in money and banking.