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With the Fourth of July here already, it’s officially the season of summer reading. Picking up a book during your holiday, in between the barbecues and fireworks, can be a great opportunity to learn more investing.
However, sorting through all the finance-focused titles out there to determine which ones to put at the top of your reading list can be tough: On Amazon.com alone, a search for “investing” books brings up nearly 83,000 results.
Luckily, the BlackRock Investment Institute developed a helpful list. We recently polled BlackRock’s top investing minds to find out what books they’d recommend to those looking to become better investors. Here are their top seven recommendations, in alphabetical order.
- “Margin of Safety: Risk-Averse Value Investing Strategies for the Thoughtful Investor” by Seth A. Klarman. This out-of-print book from 1991 is a value investing classic. While the actual book retails for more than $1,000 and is a frequently stolen library book, it’s worth checking to see if your local library has a copy. You also can find the PDF version online via a Google search.
- “Money of the Mind: How the 1980s Got That Way” by James Grant. Blog Contributor Russ Koesterich recommends this history of American finance. “At a time when most of the world’s major central banks are stretching the boundaries of monetary policy, this book offers a useful reminder of the fragility of fiat currencies,” he says.
- “Reminiscences of a Stock Operator” by Edwin Lefevre. According to one BlackRock Investment Institute member, this must-read classic helps explain “the need to listen to and then bet against stock market sentiment.”
- “The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies” by Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee. A BlackRock Investment Institute member calls this book “a stimulating and provocative look at the impact of evolving technology on the economy.”
- “Security Analysis: Sixth Edition” by Benjamin Graham and David Dodd with a foreword by Warren Buffett. Warren Buffett has read the 1940 version of this investing “classic” at least four times, according to the book’s description on Amazon.com.
- “Thinking, Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman. In this widely-acclaimed book, a winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics explains how we can guard against the detrimental impact of cognitive biases. As one BlackRock Investment Institute member puts it: “It’s HARD to be smarter than the market, so making fewer cognitive errors often wins.”
- “This Time is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly” by Carmen M. Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff. In this “must-read” book, economists Reinhart and Rogoff put the most recent credit crisis in historical context. In a 2011 book review, Russ called the book “especially relevant to today’s investors.”
What must-read investing books did we miss?
Sources: BlackRock, Amazon.com