I was surprised to learn that this book by Jeffrey Little and Lucien Rhodes was first published over 30 years ago, is now in its fifth edition and has sold over one million copies. I say surprised because I hadn’t even heard of the book in all these years of writing the blog and reading (or at least being aware of) pretty much every popular book on personal finance and investing out there. After reading the book, I don’t find its popularity and longevity surprising at all — it is an excellent primer on stocks, bonds, options, exchange-traded funds, precious metals etc.
The authors have packed a vast range of topics ranging from financial manias to the history of Wall Street to its many colourful personalities in the book’s 350 odd pages. The result is a valuable reference book that you can turn to whenever you want a quick explanation for an investment concept. The book is filled with delightful sidebars, photographs, newspaper clippings, charts and graphics. For instance, a sidebar on the profitability of selected industries shows that Broadcasting ranks among the most profitable (almost as much as drugs) and, unsurprisingly, Airlines rank among the least profitable.
The paperback book is published by McGraw Hill and is available from Amazon for $17.50. Amazon’s Look Inside feature allows you to browse through some of the content. In the interest of full disclosure, I should point out that a review copy was provided by the publisher.