Book Review - The Astute Investor by Eric L. Prentis
I was recently contacted by Eric Prentis, the author of The Astute Investor, asking if I would be interested in reviewing his book. Always open to new ideas, I gladly accepted. Although the book could use some polish for copy editing, there's a lot of valuable information here.
Part 1: Investing Principles and Strategies; Theory and Practice; Equity and Bond Fundamentals; Stock Market Technical Analysis; Trading Psychology; Intrinsic, Market, and Bargain Values; Interest Rate Principles; Interpreting The News; Being Contrarian; The Ten-Step Method For Investing Success
Part 2: Retirement Planning; Discounted Capital Market Theory; Conclusion; Glossary; Bibliography; Index
Unlike regular "mass market" investor books, The Astute Investor is not a quick read with a mindless, formulaic approach to buying stocks. This book requires you to concentrate and pay attention to ideas and concepts. Prentice goes into a fairly in-depth explanation of market indices, market theory, and technical analysis and charting. In addition to explaining the overall concepts, he also goes into the hows and whys behind how those concepts drive what happens in the market today, and how you can avoid falling prey to fallacies that sound right but have underlying flaws. The chapter on the ten-step method brings together all the previous chapters into an overall plan for picking a stock for investment purposes, and uses eBay as an example to work out the models. Armed with this material, you'll end up with more hits than misses in your portfolio.
The main downside to this book is the editing. As a self-published book, there is less emphasis on stylistic consistency and readability concerns. In addition to a few typos, the content seems to be somewhat choppy in places. More than once, I wondered if each chapter was a stand-alone piece of work or whether it was all going to mesh into a cohesive whole later on. While it does coalesce at the end, there's the chance that the reader might be somewhat lost at that point. And that's really a shame, as the material is important and valuable...
If all you want is a quick way to pick a popular stock to buy and sell, this book will likely not appeal to you. But for the serious investor, this is information you can benefit from...