Investing & Trading Books
A list of investing books that I have read which you may find useful in your journey as an investor.
The Complete TurtleTrader: How 23 Novice Investors Became Overnight Millionaires by Michael Covel – Whenever anyone asks me about how to get started in trading (not investing), and they’re serious (and I like them), this is the book I always recommend. The lessons I learned from this book made me a profitable trader many years ago. If you’re smart, creative, can synthesize information well, and don’t need to be spoon-fed, you should easily be able to formulate your own trading system from the ample information, data, and stories provided here. If you want to make money trading actively, the concepts laid out in this book are critical to understanding risk-reward, position sizing, positive expectancy, turnover, etc.
40 Years A Speculator by Fred Carach – This was surprisingly a good investing book. Don’t let the dice on the cover and the word “speculator” on the cover turn you off.
This book was pivotal in my transition from trading to investing. If you’re having trouble buying into the rationale of value investing and investing in smaller less-covered companies as opposed to trading, this book is an impactful and easy read. I’ve never read anyone else state their case for value and micro-cap investing more simply than Carach, which is why I recommend this book for new-to-intermediate investors/traders who are still trying to figure out what the best strategy for them is. Not a perfect book, but the good parts sparked transformative, “light-bulb ON” moments for me.
One Up On Wall Street by Peter Lynch – Lynch is a master at investing large amounts of money, and a clear-thinker who uses all tools to his disposal. This book gives you insight on how he thinks. Many people misconstrue this book to mean “Buy what you know”, but “what you know” is just a starting point. There’s more work involved, and it’s harder than Lynch makes it out to be (as all greats tend to do.) Fun fact: Lynch coined the term “multibagger” in investing.
Philip A. Fisher’s Collected Works.
Warren Buffett once said, “I’m 15 percent Fisher and 85 percent Benjamin Graham.” That’s a glowing endorsement. In fact, Philip Fisher’s writings are seen as the bible of growth investors.
If you want to get rich in the stock market, Philip Fisher’s writings are a must-read. Start with Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits, and work your way through. I enjoyed the Foreword from Fisher’s son, Ken, which provided color on his legendary father’s life and surprisingly reasonable work schedule and habits.
The Intelligent Investor: The Definitive Book on Value Investing (Revised Edition) by Benjamin Graham – Published in 1949, this classic investing book changed Warren Buffett’s life, who found not only the keys to success in investing, but a mentor whom he would go on to study under in real life and work for before starting his own hedge fund.
Warren Buffett stated: “Chapters 8 and 20 have been the bedrock of my investing activities for more than 60 years. I suggest that all investors read those chapters and reread them every time the market has been especially strong or weak.” Those chapters alone are worth having the book in your library.
The original book might be a difficult read for some, which is why today’s money managers and finance writers created this revised version where they provide helpful commentary between chapters and in the footnotes to help modernize the book and make the dense text more accessible to today’s aspiring value/fundamental investors. (Graham’s original words are left untouched.)
The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life by Alice Schroeder.
This is the FULL hardcover version, not the shortened paperback version. It’s a long-winded read, but if you really want to get an inside look on Warren Buffett’s life, what makes him tick, what experiences in his younger years shaped him, etc., read this book and take notes.
I’ve read other biographies written on Warren Buffett before, but this is the one to get since the author had years of unprecedented access to Buffett, his files, colleagues, friends, and family. Buffett himself hated the book, which might be a sign that she did something right…
The Education of a Value Investor by Guy Spier – A good book for both finance people and regular people. Great life lessons. Read my in-depth review.
Hedge Fund Market Wizards: How Winning Traders Win by Jack Schwager – A good series in general. This one was the strongest in my opinion.
Reminiscences of a Stock Operator by Edwin Lefevre. A cult classic for traders. It’s about the famous trader, Jesse Livermore who made and lost several fortunes. If you like an entertaining story that reads well, then this will suffice. If you want to learn how to trade well, I personally think you can do better; go with TurtleTrader instead.
The Alpha Masters: Unlocking the Genius of the World’s Top Hedge Funds – A decent book. More applicable to hedge fund folks running big money than the average retail trader/investor, although you might pick up a few insights or two. By the time I got my hands on this book, I already had my own methods, had already considered many of the methods being implemented by the managers in the book, and found it more to be a leisure read.
Trend Following: Learn To Make Millions In Up Or Down Markets by Michael Covel – a more in-depth book on trend following. However, I recommend TurtleTraders over this book. I only have this book listed here to tell you that I recommend buying his other book.
Self Improvement Books
Moonwalking With Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything by Joshua Foer. One of the best books I’ve ever read. I didn’t go on to join and win a national memory competition like the author did, but I applied many of the concepts I learned from this book to my own life, and gained more understanding on the inner workings of mastery than even books like Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers which focused a lot more on social aspects. This book taught me thoroughly that Memory = Mastery.
12 Rules For Life: An Antidote To Chaos by Jordan B. Peterson – This book brought tears to my eyes at times. It’s a denser book than it appears. Read it from cover to cover and don’t skip around, because Peterson’s writing style will quickly fly over your head if you attempt to read from the middle of a chapter, as each sentence builds from the previous one.
Read slow, and try to grasp his hard-earned wisdom as a clinical psychologist, professor, and philosopher. Bonus: the book also gave me unexpected, unprecedented understanding of the ancient wisdom of the stories in the Bible. A must read.
Atomic Habits by James Clear.
Why do you procrastinate? Why do you keep doing stuff that you don’t really want to do, yet fail to get started on your most important dreams and goals? This book will give you the blueprint to setting yourself straight. Practical advice backed by proven techniques and research. Smoothly-written. A must-read.
Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker. A must-read in today’s times. This book changed my life for the better. Bill Gates recommended it too in December 2019. Check out my in-depth review here.
Personal Finance Books
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. Everyone knows this book, and for good reason. It won’t tell you how to allocate capital, but does a great job in teaching the concepts of persistence, desire, and sacrifice.
The Richest Man in Babylon by George Clason.
Reads like a Bible parable. Teaches you the basic wisdom of managing your money properly in a format that is highly memorable and entertaining. Appropriate for children as well as adults with very little perspective on why money is important and worth becoming knowledgeable about.
Beyond Paycheck to Paycheck by Michael Rubin. This is my favorite practical personal finance book. Very comprehensive, yet not intimidating (which is a hard to balance to strike.) The younger you can get your hands on it, the better. College students, people who just moved out of their parents place, etc. will benefit most from this book. If you’re older and well off, you don’t need this book. If you’re older and have no clue about personal finance, this is a great book, too.
Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T. Harv Eker
You’d be surprised, but many people don’t actually want to get rich, even if they say they do. These hindering thought patterns are real; I suffered from them myself (and sometimes, I still do.) This book will help you untangle those unhelpful beliefs. Highly recommended for aspiring capitalists, entrepreneurs, and investors. I read this when I was still in high school, and have re-read it throughout the years whenever necessary.
The Secret History of the World by Mark Booth. An interesting read. What I took away from the book was less about history and secret societies, and more about seeing the world and life through different perspectives: inner world versus outer world, and materialism versus idealism. Reading this book somehow allowed me to create better memory palaces after reading the Joshua Foer’s memory book, Moonwalking With Einstein. It also facilitated my ability to grasp certain concepts in Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules For Life, particularly about seeing the world from a drama perspective versus mere objectivism (different terminologies, but referring to the same ancient concepts.)
Ask and It Is Given: Learning to Manifest Your Desires by Esther and Jerry Hicks — Although this is a Law of Attraction/Positive Thinking book, which many materialists would balk at, it’s one of the best books of its genre. The strength of Hicks’ writings is that they find the words to express truths and observations that people have trouble expressing themselves in a simple manner. They’ve coined terminology that makes sense and is emotionally practical if implemented. A simple thought experiment will quickly reveal that if you were to go about your life as if the information in this book were real, you would technically find more success in your endeavors than someone without faith in anything.
Only recommended for people who are into New Age stuff to begin with, as well as open-minded people seeking to understand different perspectives in order to see if there’s something missing from their own perspective.