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The Neatest Little Guide to Stock Market Investing (RevisedEdition) Paperback – December 30, 2003


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Editorial Reviews

Review

The Neatest Little Guide stands alone. There is no other book on the market like this one. -- Michael H. Sherman, Chairman, Sierra Global Management, LLC

About the Author

Jason Kelly graduated in 1993 from the University of Colorado at Boulder with a Bachelor of Arts in English. He worked for several years at IBM's Silicon Valley Laboratory where he wrote articles and books that won him the Society for Technical Communications Merit Award. His knack for making complex information readable and even enjoyable proved perfect for the world of finance when he launched his trademarked Neatest Little Guide series in 1996. Since then, readers around the world have followed his simple, time-tested strategies to make more money, spend it wisely, and invest effectively.
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Product Details

  • Series: Neatest Little Guide to Stock Market Investing
  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Plume; Revised edition (December 30, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0452284732
  • ISBN-13: 978-0452284739
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (124 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #124,050 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jason Kelly is the author of "The 3% Signal" (3Sig), which introduced the technique that pushed dollar-cost averaging aside as the stock market's new best practice. His nine other books include "The Neatest Little Guide to Stock Market Investing," a BusinessWeek best seller now in its fifth edition; and its companion volume, "Stock Market Contest."

Every Sunday morning he sends out The Kelly Letter. It highlights the latest coin-toss forecasts being foisted on the unsuspecting by "z-vals," a shorthand introduced in 3Sig for zero-validity pundits, proven to be wrong half the time but still blathering on a regular basis. The letter also runs the original 3 percent signal plan and two permutations, providing subscribers with a clear (and usually humorous) look at financial markets. Yes, 3Sig is still running circles around the z-vals with just a single quarterly rebalance to its famous signal line, no forecasting required -- or desired.

He graduated from the University of Colorado in 1993 with a BA in English, but not before a professor told him that he would never succeed as an author because he "lacked a basic command of the English language." Luckily, IBM disagreed and hired Jason as a technical writer at its Silicon Valley Laboratory in San Jose, California. Once income from his freelance writing matched his income from IBM, Jason left corporate life to become a full-time freelance writer. About IBM hiring him for the only "real" job he's ever had, Jason wrote in his book "Financially Stupid People," "I keep a special smile for Big Blue because of that break. It was the only company that believed in me. I never knew the meaning of the term 'competing offer.'"

One of Jason's Japanese publishers, Shueisha, brought him to Tokyo on book tour in 1999. He took that opportunity to visit his old high school exchange student friend, and wrote a funny article about the experience. That article remains one of Jason's most widely read. It's still on his site (short link http://v.gd/12years). Japan went straight to Jason's heart, and he decided to live there. He rented out his home in California and moved to Sano, Japan in 2002 for what he thought was going to be a one-year stay. This many years later, he still lives and works there.

After the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, he started Socks for Japan, a volunteer organization that hand-delivered 160,000 care packages from around the world to survivors. See photos and read reports about the effort at jasonkelly.com/helpjapan.

In addition to writing new books and The Kelly Letter, he's an investor in Red Frog Coffee in Longmont, Colorado, a delightful shop managed by his sister and business partner, Emily. It was voted Longmont's Small Business of the Year in 2014.

His website is at jasonkelly.com.

Customer Reviews

It is occasionally easy to make money buying and selling stocks.
D. Spaulding
He covers the basics and terminology of Stock investing well; this book is an excellent introduction to stock market investing for beginners.
Q
Mr. Kelly has written a book that is very clear concise & informative.
D. Ryan

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

612 of 640 people found the following review helpful By Nicholas E. Johansen VINE VOICE on July 1, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I presume the majority of the glowing reviews on this site are from novice investors. Afterall, that's what this book is aimed towards. While it contains many useful bits of information, some of the things mentioned by Mr. Kelly would most certainly be detrimental to a new investor. Allow me to explain.

First, the good. Kelly does an excellent job of defining various stock terms -- everything from P/E ratio to beta -- and doing it in simple language. As a side note, his writing style and prose is significantly better than that featured in most investing books, since he was an English major. Additionally, Kelly provides excellent research resources, including ones that I had not found in my extensive internet searches. More information and more sources is never a bad thing, and Kelly provides the latter in spades. Finally, his introduction to such investment greats as Warren Buffett and Peter Lynch -- while rudimentary -- are very helpful for the new investor. I find it particularly good that he utilizes Lynch extensively in his own strategy, because Lynch is (arguably) the best fund manager that has ever lived.

Unfortunately, Mr. Kelly adds a bit of his own intuition and thoughts into the strategies he presents in this book. First and foremost, his notion that investing in the UltraDow mutual fund is sound is beyond ludicrous. Not only is this an ineffective use of money, but its volatility and risk far outweighs its gains. Secondly, Kelly seems to be a bit full of himself, calling Wall Street professionals "gurus" who know as much about the stock market as YOU do. In the preface, he states that using this book "always works" -- a pretty bold statement from someone who is A) not a business major and B) not really even a market professional.
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60 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Q on June 24, 2006
Format: Paperback
First of all, Kelly's writing is very witty and entertaining. He has a gift for explaining complex issues in simple and easy to understand langauge. The title describes this book perfectly. Kelly is very concise: long on practical advice, without a lot of dry theory and argument. He covers the basics and terminology of Stock investing well; this book is an excellent introduction to stock market investing for beginners. There is a valuable chapter in which he summarizes the investment methods of some of the most successful and famous market wizards such as Benjamin Graham, Warren Buffett, William O'Neil and others. Kelly reviews the main factors that are essential for evaluating a potential stock purchase. I liked the chapter that reviews the available investing magazines, websites, databases and software. Finally he gives a practical method for finding the best stocks out there: A list of important criteria, where to find those criteria, and how to interpret the data you find.

There are some parts of his book which are not too great, such as his heavy emphasis on the "Dogs of the Dow," a rather well-known and out-moded strategy, and his idea that the UltraDow fund UDPIX is your best core fund holding is just plain CRAZY. This fund is very volatile, with a Beta of 2.07, more than twice as volatile as the market, and an Alpha of -5.78, which means that the risk you take on is very poorly rewarded. For a core fund, try something like Oakmark's Equity and Income OAKBX, or Vanguard's Windsor II VWNFX. Kelly must have some sweetheart deal with Profunds, since they are the only mutual funds he recommends. The so-called "Ultra" funds he recommends are extremely volatile.

He has a website too, which gives a weekly overview of market conditions and advertises his newsletter.
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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Steve Burns TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 5, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book due to its 5 star rating after 125 reviews, and it did not disappoint. It really is the neatest little guide because the author covered all aspects of beginning to invest in the stock market. Here is what you get:

1).Learn how the equity market works.

2).Learn how to evaluate stocks, How you judge a stock depends on whether you are a value or growth investor.

3).Learn how the master investors invest. Warren Buffet, Peter Lynch, Gary Pilgrim, William O'Neil, and Phillip Fisher.(I have read all the books he recommends and he is exactly right on these being the masters)

4).He discusses the studies of James O'Shaughnessy from the book "What works on Wall Street" This guy studied what stocks really did the best between 1951 and 1996, this book is a must have. Low P/E ratios and low price to sales ratios have performed the best.

5).He discusses how to double the return of the Dow by investing in the Ultra Dow UDPIX from ProFunds. They use margin to double the return of the Dow in whatever direction it goes. He also discusses many other Dow strategies.

6).Write down why you are investing in a stock so you know when to get out.

7).Choose a discount broker and stop wasting money on full service.

8).Research only 20 stocks at a time, use his stocks to watch work sheet to analyze the stocks value.

9).He explains the limit and market order, and the stop loss and stop order and when and why to use both.

10).He shows when to sell your stocks to lock in gains.

This is a great place to start an education in the stock market, he touches on almost everything a beginner needs to know about. I wish I would have read this book before I read the more technical classics. The author also has a great sense of humor and the book is a pleasure to read while you learn. Stop looking for a book on investing and buy this one.
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