Many people would like to participate in the stock market, but lack the basic knowledge of how to start. That’s where Stock Investing for Dummies comes in. Read below for a concise review of this book, and how it can help you achieve your goal: profits from the stock market. We look at its main points, strenghts, and weaknesses.
Stock Investing for Dummies Overview
This popular book is one of the well known “For Dummies” series of how-to books. As in all the “For Dummies” books, this one is no different. It assumes that the reader is no dummy, but instead desires to gain an in-depth knowledge, essentially starting from scratch with little or no knowledge at all.
Written by Paul Mladjenovic, a Certified Financial Planner and investing consultant, this book contains 24 chapters and several appendices. It can be read cover-to-cover in about a day or two. Readers can also access any chapter for specific information without too much reliance on prior chapter material.
The author then deals with the risks with stocks, exchange-traded funds, finding a broker, and comparing stock growth investing to stock dividend investing. He then proceeds with several chapters providing tips on how to pick winners, including how to analyze company documentation, and different sector and industry opportunities. The book rounds out with tax consideration, indicators of stock greatness, bear market considerations, and specialized profit-enhancing strategies. To learn more about the field, you should also check out our book review for Real Estate Investing for Dummies.
What We Learned
We learned that this is not only a resource for the beginner stock investor. It is also quite useful for stock investors at all stages of development. Without sounding too trite, Stock Investing for Dummies can be considered the Bible for stock investors. Here are a few things we found particularly interesting and helpful:
- For the amount of content, this book is a great value. It is also very affordable, you can buy it in paperback for less than $25 online.
- The book covers much more than stock investing. It relates stock investing to financial security and places stocks in the context of a balanced portfolio.
- The author’s concern for mitigating your tax burden when investing in stocks is particularly insightful.
- His coverage on what to do in bear markets is exceptional. It provides the beginner with some great information when markets decline.
- Some of the profit-enhancing strategies, for example, “covered-call writing”, are worth their weight in gold. They can really enhance your portfolio performance while reducing risk.
- The author explains basic investing lingo, leaves you with useful notes on how to analyze the stock market, and includes further links as well.
- If what you’re looking for is a book focused on long-term investing, then this is the book for you. If you want a book that focuses on short-term stock, you might need to look for a different one.
Strengths and Weaknesses
What We Liked
There are several aspects of this book that we liked. First, the sheer amount of useful material, coupled with the easy, light-hearted writing style, without fancy lingo, was fabulous, especially for the price.
Second, the author covers not only how to invest in stocks, but places this into a holistic context of the reader’s personal goals and risk appetite, as well as general national economic factors, and fiscal concerns. The book is filled with practical examples as well, so fear not, it’s not just about theory.
If you feel like this book has only just opened your appetite for learning about the stock market, you will be happy to hear that it also provides you with resources that you can use for further education. Finally, the book is peppered with bits of humor that make the reader feel at ease in this otherwise daunting subject.
What Could Have Been Done Better
Some folks might be put off by books in the “For Dummies” series. For them, the fact that this is one of “those books” might be a negative. For that reason, perhaps the author might have considered writing this book as a stand-alone volume. Hopefully, this positive review will be helpful for those with that opinion.
Additionally, although public comments about this volume are favorable, several commentators were perturbed by the author’s “conservative bias” and, in a few cases, others thought the book “too overwhelming for a beginner.” You might have to read the book at least twice if you want to get everything there is to get out of it, especially if you have no prior knowledge of stock investing.
Keep in mind that the book spends a great deal of time discussing stock picking, which is quite discredited as an investing strategy. The writing can seem redundant at times, mainly because it focuses so much on some of the basics.
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Stock Investing for Dummies by Paul Mladjenovic is really a high-level, no-nonsense guide for individuals who wish to invest and profit in the stock market. Whether you are a real beginner or think that you are a savvy stock picker, this book will be a useful addition to your investing library, one which you will refer to over and over.