THE ONLY INVESTMENT GUIDE YOU’LL EVER NEED
Well, it certainly turned out to be the only investment guide I’d ever need. I wrote it way back in the Seventies, when I was a kid writing for New York Magazine. Everybody at the office — from the famous editor down to the cheerful receptionist — wanted to know what to do with his or her money. As if I knew!
I tried to be helpful, but soon found myself repeating the same simple basics over and over again. And it was getting really tedious. I realized I could save a lot of time, and do a better job of advice-giving, if I sat down and really thought it through and gave it my best shot. So that’s what I did, and thereafter I was able, when a co-worker asked me for advice, to just hand them the book. “Here.”
Of course, tax laws change, prices soar and crash, Wall Street invents new scams — I’ve updated the book periodically. But the basics never change. Live beneath your means, get off the debt treadmill, minimize your transaction costs, trust no one — this book attempts to take you through it all, from buying tuna in bulk to avoiding variable annuities.
With more than a million sold by now, I’ve enjoyed the royalties. But what I’ve really enjoyed is hearing from people two decades later. Admittedly, it was a very good two decades (the Dow was under 1000 when the book came out in 1978, and you could have averaged down as it fell to 777 in the summer of 1982). But sure enough: Given time, the basic, prudent, steady habits really do work. The goal of this book is to make all that clear — and fun.
Quote of the Day
In 1800, 75% of [an American's] working man's expenditures went for food alone. By 1850, that had dropped to 50%. Today it is a little more than 11%.~The Wall Street Journal, September 20, 1996
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