One Up On Wall Street - Summary

Peter Lynch

One Up On Wall Street Book Cover


Peter Lynch’s “One Up On Wall Street” is a classic investment book that has stood the test of time. First published in 1989, it is still relevant today, offering valuable insights into the world of investing. The book is a must-read for anyone interested in investing in the stock market, whether you’re a beginner or an experienced investor. In this essay, I will provide a summary of the book, highlighting its key themes, and providing examples and anecdotes from the book wherever possible.


Peter Lynch is a legendary investor who managed the Fidelity Magellan Fund from 1977 to 1990. During his tenure, the fund grew from $18 million to over $14 billion, making Lynch one of the most successful fund managers of all time. In “One Up On Wall Street,” Lynch shares his investment philosophy and the strategies he used to achieve such impressive returns.

The Lynch Approach

Lynch’s approach to investing is based on the idea that individual investors have an advantage over professional investors. He believes that ordinary investors can use their everyday experiences and observations to identify good investment opportunities. Lynch calls this approach “investing in what you know.”

The Six Categories

Lynch identifies six categories of stocks that investors should consider when looking for investment opportunities. These categories are:

  1. Slow growers: Companies that have a low growth rate but are stable and pay dividends.
  2. Stalwarts: Companies that have a moderate growth rate and are leaders in their industry.
  3. Fast growers: Companies that have a high growth rate but are not yet established.
  4. Cyclicals: Companies that are sensitive to economic cycles.
  5. Turnarounds: Companies that are in trouble but have the potential to recover.
  6. Asset plays: Companies that have valuable assets that are not reflected in their stock price.

The Importance of Doing Your Homework

Lynch emphasizes the importance of doing your homework before investing in a stock. He encourages investors to read annual reports, attend shareholder meetings, and talk to company employees and customers. By doing so, investors can gain a better understanding of a company’s business and its prospects for growth.

The Danger of Following the Crowd

Lynch warns investors against following the crowd and investing in popular stocks. He believes that the best investment opportunities are often found in companies that are not well-known or widely followed. By investing in these companies, investors can take advantage of the market’s inefficiencies and earn higher returns.

The Role of Patience

Lynch stresses the importance of patience when it comes to investing. He believes that investors should take a long-term view and hold onto their investments for several years. By doing so, investors can ride out short-term fluctuations in the market and benefit from the long-term growth of the companies they invest in.

The Importance of Diversification

Lynch also emphasizes the importance of diversification. He believes that investors should spread their investments across different industries and categories of stocks. By doing so, investors can reduce their risk and increase their chances of earning higher returns.

The Role of Emotions

Lynch recognizes that emotions can play a significant role in investing. He encourages investors to avoid making emotional decisions and to stick to their investment strategy. He also warns against becoming too attached to a particular stock and holding onto it for too long.


In conclusion, “One Up On Wall Street” is a timeless investment book that offers valuable insights into the world of investing. Peter Lynch’s investment philosophy and strategies have stood the test of time and continue to be relevant today. By following Lynch’s advice and doing your homework, avoiding following the crowd, being patient, diversifying your investments, and avoiding emotional decisions, you can increase your chances of earning higher returns in the stock market.

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