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Security Analysis: The Classic 1934 Edition Hardcover

ISBN-13: 978-0070244962 ISBN-10: 0070244960 Edition: 1st

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Security Analysis: The Classic 1934 Edition + The Intelligent Investor: The Definitive Book on Value Investing. A Book of Practical Counsel (Revised Edition) + Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits and Other Writings
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 725 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill; 1 edition (October 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0070244960
  • ISBN-13: 978-0070244962
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 2.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #118,102 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Read and reap? J.P. Morgan Co.'s private-banking unit, New York, compiles "Summer Must-Reads for Millionaires." The 10-book list includes the 1934 edition of "Security Analysis." The Wall Street Journal 20000726

From the Author

Security Analysis is the bible of fundamental analysis. Originally published in 1934, the tome systematically lays bare the science of security analysis. Written with the assistance of cowriter David Dodd, Benjamin Graham's intellectual tour de force has yet to be equaled in the annals of investing. Written only a few years after the devastating stock market crash of 1929, Graham had one objective--to make the investment process as safe as possible using knowledge of key factors about the business.

Beginning with bonds and moving quickly to stocks, Graham and Dodd go over all of the angles. Articulating a comprehensive theory of fixed-value and common stock investment, they examine in detail the various factors that one should consider when valuing securities. Dividends, extraordinary items, depreciation, amortization, capital structure and balance sheet analysis are all described and defined in lurid detail. It is impossible to read Security Analysis and not come away with a deeper understanding of corporate finance and how it relates to investing.

On the downside, let's be frank--Security Analysis is not an easy book to read. However, it remains one of the key textbooks for communicating fundamental analysis to millions of MBAs, in spite of the fact that it first saw print 63 years ago. I personally believe that reading and understanding most of Security Analysis would make a great benchmark for determining whether or not you are ready to start investing your money in specific investments. Sure, Graham is very value-biased in his investment philosophy, but looking for growth without focusing on the price you are paying is the golden road to underperformance.


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Customer Reviews

Every serious value investor has to read this book.
Mariusz Skonieczny
Warren Buffett was the most favorite student of Ben Graham.
Indrajith A. Weeraratne
The style and reasoning is extremely clear and sound.
ws__

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

67 of 71 people found the following review helpful By S. Schneider on December 14, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Although it is fun to read Graham & Dodd's First from the context of historical perspective, there is more to this volume than history. When I first learned that Warren Buffett keeps and peruses EACH edition of Graham & Dodd's "Security Analysis", this struck me as a sort of silly fanaticism. But anyone who takes the time to read more than one edition of "Security Analysis" will understand why Buffett probably keeps all four. For better or worse, each edition has some gem which may not be found in the other volumes. In the first, for instance, there is a section on rights offering analysis which can't be found in the 3rd and 4th editions (I've actually never been able to get my hands on a second edition, so I don't know whether the equation he offers in in the 2nd or not).
I'm not sure if this would be the first "Security Analysis" volume I'd try to tackle (the 3rd is probably the best...Graham participated less actively in the 4th), but if you are comfortable enough with security analysis terminology to know what is antiquated and what is not in this 1934 text, you will not be sorry you made the effort to buy and read it.
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67 of 72 people found the following review helpful By JP on April 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My star rating is for the 1934 edition, but this review may appear for other editions of the book.

The 1934 edition came out before the creation of the SEC and deals with a lot of accounting irregularities that are not such a problem today. I suggest you buy a newer edition.

Some people seem to have a preference for the 1940 edition. The 1951 edition was the first one written after the Great Depression, so it dealt with businesses in a more normal economic environment. The 1962 edition was the last written directly by Graham and Dodd, but it is currently unavailable. The 1988 edition is the most recent edition of Security Analysis, but it was updated by other authors years after Graham had died. The 1988 edition is the one currently used as a textbook for Columbia University's Security Analysis course.

Update: Since I wrote my review, the sixth edition of this book has been published. Apparently, it is essentially the 1940 edition with commentary from some of today's most notable value investors.
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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 19, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Someone wrote reviews to this book indicating that the major downside to it is its age. The book was written in 1934 therefore it misses all the modern developments of finance - modern portfolio theory for example - and all the new techniques that Wall Street "experts" use today.
As an answer I give an anecdote from Warren Buffett's life:
When stock investments started to become popular, the volume increased ten fold, and the modern techniques to make a profit were developed, Warren Buffet was extremely worried. He remembered what happened in 1929. He loathed the new trends in investment that tried to predict the future price of a stock. Therefore he had a meeting with all his fellow Graham students, he expressly forbid to bring anything newer than the 1934 edition of Security Analysis.
This happened decades ago, but history repeats. We all know what happened 3 years ago. We all know how "experts" thought that the market was booming, and how they let it crash. We all know how they made a profit on the money that private investors lost.
Nowadays when I go shopping for a book I always look at the date of pubblication, if it is between 1997 and 2000 I'm very wary. All those books about "new economy", "digital era", "e-commerce", "dot coms", etc. have to be taken with the maximum attention. Usually they contain a lot of inflated ideas that as we look at what happened after they were written we understand how much those "experts" really understand about stock investments.
If they were wrong then, why should they be righ now?
Trust me, but more importantly, trust Graham, trust Buffett, (those that have been consistently right for 50 years) this is the book to buy, "anything newer looks suspicious."
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Bob on January 16, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Yes, this is the best investing book I've ever read, but I never read the 2nd or 3rd editions so maybe they are better? I do know that the 5th edition is absolutely horrible, it wasn't written by Graham and has nothing to do with this book, and you won't learn anything about investing from reading it.

You do need a strong background in accounting to understand this book. There are some archaic accounting terms used in the book that no longer apply today. A law school course in Corporations Law is helful here too.

Nevertheless, every more modern book on "value investing" never really explained it as well as this book written in 1934.

Yes, the book is long, but who said investing should be easy? If you want easy money, go to Vegas. I made hundreds of thousands of dollars in the stock market after I read this book. This book is more valuable than a college education and a lot cheaper.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 4, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I just finished reading Grahm and Dodds Security Analysis, and
was completely overwhelemed. If you can read this book, understand everything in it, and be able to apply it, you are golden. However, if you do not really have much background in finance and accounting, it will be VERY hard to read certain parts. As a college sophomore, who has not yet taken any finance or accounting classes, i was only able to understand and benefit from perhaps 50% of the books content. This is a book where after further education in finance and accounting, it will be absolutley essential to successful investing. Also, because of the year the first edition was written, certain terminology, and examples (ie railroads) will not seem useful, however the principles those examples demonstrate are still very much applicable.
I would recommend reading the book to anyone who is interested in investing, however do not think it is something you can finish in a weekend or even a week. It took me a month.
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