Ricardo was a political economist and, along with the likes of Adam Smith, one of the first major economic thinkers. He was a staunch opponent of the Corn Laws, which imposed restrictions and tariffs on imported grain and hence kept prices high. His theory of comparative advantage is still taught to economics students as one of the key reasons why free trade is good for society. Ricardo was also a successful investor.
Born in London in 1772, he left school at 14 to take a job at his father's stockbroking firm. For the next 30 years he traded stocks and bonds on the London Stock Exchange, successfully retiring shortly after the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.
What was his strategy?
Did this work?
What was his best investment?
What lessons can Ricardo teach us?
Matthew graduated from the University of Durham in 2004; he then gained an MSc, followed by a PhD at the London School of Economics.
He has previously written for a wide range of publications, including the Guardian and the Economist, and also helped to run a newsletter on terrorism. He has spent time at Lehman Brothers, Citigroup and the consultancy Lombard Street Research.
Matthew is the author of Superinvestors: Lessons from the greatest investors in history, published by Harriman House, which has been translated into several languages. His second book, Investing Explained: The Accessible Guide to Building an Investment Portfolio, is published by Kogan Page.
As senior writer, he writes the shares and politics & economics pages, as well as weekly Blowing It and Great Frauds in History columns He also writes a fortnightly reviews page and trading tips, as well as regular cover stories and multi-page investment focus features.
Follow Matthew on Twitter: @DrMatthewPartri
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