Summary of Capital

The Story of Long-Term Investment Excellence

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Capital book summary
Capital Group has led investing for 50 years by getting everything right: values, policies, strategy and structure.


7 Overall

6 Applicability

9 Innovation

5 Style


This is an excellent book about an extraordinary organization. Founded by a brilliant but self-effacing contrarian from Alabama, The Capital Group has prospered by doing things differently. Most investment firms are ego-driven and focus on the short term. The Capital Group discourages egotism and looks to the long term. Its "multiple counselor" system assigns each of several investment managers a component part of a big fund, but in such a way that while performance can be measured, no one manager can take full credit for the fund’s successes or blame for its failures. At times, the narrative loses itself in a thicket of anecdotal detail, but that is a small flaw in a generally well-written book. Capital is an anomaly in its business, and finds that author Charles Ellis does an admirable job of sketching its chronology and important developments in its evolution.

In this summary, you will learn

  • The history and significance of The Capital Group, an important U.S. investment group; and
  • How Capital’s values built its achievements.


The Capital GroupCapital may be the most successful secret in the investing world, accompanying its low profile with a sterling long-term performance record. But Capital, a leading U.S. mutual fund manager, is not just about high performance. The company’s unique corporate culture combines a firm, unyielding...
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About the Author

Charles D. Ellis is the author of ten books including Winning the Loser’s Game. For 30 years, he was the managing director of Greenwich Associates, a strategy-consulting firm. He has taught at Yale and Harvard, and is a Director of Vanguard.

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