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The Intelligent Investor, Rev. Ed

The Intelligent Investor, Rev. Ed

The Intelligent Investor, Rev. Ed

More than one million hardcovers sold
Now available for the first time in paperback!The Classic Text Annotated to Update Graham’s Timeless Wisdom for Today’s Market ConditionsThe greatest investment advisor of the twentieth century, Benjamin Graham taught and inspired people worldwide. Graham’s philosophy of “value investing” — which shields investors from substantial error and teaches them to develop long-term strategies — has made The Intelligent Investor the stock market bible ever sin

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Comments ( 3 )

  1. L. Masonson

    690 of 703 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Investment Book Enhanced for Today�s Investors, August 11, 2003
    L. Masonson (Monroe, New York USA) -
    (REAL NAME)   
    When I first came across the first edition of this book in my local library in 1959, I was a teenager. Back in those days there were only a handful of books about the stock market. And I've read all of them during my junior high and high school years.

    This latest updated 623-page paperback (the index alone is 33 pages) version updated by Jason Zweig is a welcome addition to this classic. The original chapters are intact, but with footnoted comments by Zweig. Moreover, he provides his own commentary on each chapter contents in a separate chapter following each original chapter. He provides extensive research, charts, tables and commentary that updates the book to the present years. He is not afraid to take on the big guns of Wall Street and show how wrong they were in some of their extremely bullish predictions during January-March 2000, when the market was at its peak.

    The first nine chapters cover investing basics that all investors could benefit from. There are many truisms spouted on Wall Street that are not really true. These chapters provide the investor with a realistic picture of how Wall Street works and what investors need to do to come out ahead.

    Chapters 10-20 focus strictly on fundamental analysis, stock selection, convertible issues and warrants, and other subjects. Investors who plan to invest directly in stocks should make sure to read these chapters. However, for readers more interested in investing in mutual funds, and in particular index funds, they need not concern themselves with all the detail in these chapters unless they have the time or interest in the subject matter presented.

    In conclusion, the combination of pioneer Ben Graham?s original work coupled with Zweig?s meticulous and enjoyable update, make this a remarkable book about investments and investor behavior that every new and experienced investor should read. Of the 500 investing books that I?ve read, this one certainly is one of the greats of all time.

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  2. Paige Turner "Paige"

    288 of 291 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Shakespeare for the Investing Crowd, July 28, 2006
    Paige Turner "Paige" (New York) -
    Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?)
    This book is light reading compared to Ben Graham's seminal tome, Security Analysis. It's easier to read, and shorter. It's also more up to date. Highly recommended for investors of any stripe, value or growth. The appendix, from Warren Buffett's speech at Columbia University is particularly entertaining, as he debunks academia's love affair with efficient market theory. Jason Zweig, an obvious Graham disciple, does a fantastic job bringing the book's principles to life through modern examples. The only grating thing is his constant derision of brokers or anyone that actually gets paid to manage money. (full disclosure: I'm an analyst now and was a broker for 10 years).

    Ben Graham clearly invested in the stock market during a period of hustlers, crooks, crashes, and frauds. Brokers, investment bankers and analysts back then were not much more than fast-talking salesmen. Wait a minute, that sounds just like the way things are today on Wall Street! Things may not have changed as much as we would like to think. Due to his travails as an investor in difficult markets, Ben Graham's investment style evolved into a systematic, logical approach which became the basis for value investing. In "The Intelligent Investor", Graham lays out the foundation of value investing by three introducing key principles: the idea of "Mr. Market", a value-oriented disciplined approach to investing, and the "margin of safety" concept.

    "Mr. Market."

    The stock market on a daily basis resembles a casino, only without the comfort of free cocktails. Watching the stock ticker is like having a business partner that is totally schizophrenic; Graham calls him "Mr. Market." One day he loves the business and wants to pay a ridiculous price to buy out your half. The next day, all hope is lost, and he wants to sell you his portion for pennies on the dollar. Graham argues that this daily liquidity is an advantage that most investors turn against themselves: (p. 203) "But note this important fact: The true investor scarcely ever is forced to sell his shares, and at all other times he is free to disregard the current price quotation. He need pay attention to it and act upon it only to the extent that it suits his book, and no more. Thus the investor who permits himself to be stampeded or unduly worried by unjustified market declines in his holdings is perversely transforming his basic advantage into a basic disadvantage. That man would be better off if his stocks had no market quotation at all; for he would then be spared the mental anguish caused him by other persons' mistakes of judgment." This is profound. It's not a question of whether our stocks will drop; they will: the trick is how we respond to that eventuality.

    Ben Graham's Stock selection for the defensive investor.

    Graham lays out some important characteristics of "value" stocks. (p. 348). Some of the metrics are dated, but the principles are still valid. Even deep value investing today would seem like GARP investing to Ben Graham. Investors are now more focused on future earnings than they were in his day, and valuations reflect that. Graham recommends:

    a. Adequate size of the enterprise (>$100M revenue, old figure)

    b. Sufficiently strong financial condition (2:1 current ratio)

    c. Earnings stability (some earnings every year last 10 years)

    d. Dividend record (uninterrupted payments for at least 20 years)

    e. Earnings growth (1/3 increase in per share EPS past 10 years)

    f. Moderate price/earnings ratio (P/E < 15x average last 3 years EPS)

    g. Moderate ratio of price to assets (price/book < 1 1/2 times)

    h. Overall stock portfolio, when acquired, should have an overall earnings /price ratio- the reverse of the P/E ratio - at least as high as the current high-grade bond rate. A P/E no higher than 13.3 against an AA bond yield of 7.5%

    Margin of Safety as the central concept of value investing.

    This is an investment rule that was written by a man who had been deeply bruised by bear markets. I believe he came up with this by learning from his losses. When the market turns into a storm of feces, like it inevitably will, if the stock has no earnings to rely on, you have nothing to grab onto. You can't make yourself stay in the stock when the price is down. Graham says: (p. 515) "The margin of safety is the difference between the percentage rate of the earnings on the stock at the price you pay for it and the rate of interest on bonds, and that is to absorb unsatisfactory developments". Furthermore he writes: (p. 518) "The buyer of bargain issues places particular emphasis on the ability of the investment to withstand adverse developments. " You can and will still lose money in the market with value-oriented investing, but according to Graham: (p. 518) "The margin guarantees only that he has a better... Read more
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  3. mingus500 "mingus500"

    175 of 182 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars A worthwhile read, with relevant commentary, July 13, 2003
    mingus500 "mingus500" (Nashville, TN United States) -
    Graham's writing is clear, concise and level-headed. He warns against unreasonable financial expectations and proceeds to explain his theories in sufficient detail to be worthwhile, without being over the comprehension of the layman interested in investing.

    The book is lengthy and "solid", as opposed to other finance books that hope to explain investment in 100-200 pages. Topics include stocks vs. bonds, inflation, security analysis, and margin of safety (Graham's analysis of the assets of a company in relation to its debt). Zweig's commentary is useful, with footnotes to clarify historical references and, occasionally, demonstrate instances where Graham's predictions proved untrue. At the end of each chapter, Zweig uses recent (up to early 2003) examples of Graham's concepts to make things clearer to modern readers. (Graham's text itself is his 1973 revision to the original 1949 edition.) Also helpful are numerous references to online articles at various sites (I cannot yet vouch for these links' present state.)

    Based on my understanding, I highly recommend this edition to anyone interested in this book. I feel that I gleaned more from this annotated edition than I would have from the original, without having to conduct additional research.

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