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on August 1, 2015
Good anecdotal review of why low cost, passive strategies beat the overwhelming majority of active managers, backed up by discussion of academic studies presenting this point. The book's premise would have been more convincing if the author had taken a more broad, data driven view of the various market risk premiums/styles, such as momentum, credit, and duration. The author also arbitrarily excluded the vast majority of the fixed income universe from consideration in portfolio construction (including the benefits of duration and credit exposures in the portfolio) under the pretenses of reducing volatility and a sloppy, static correlation analysis with equity markets, which in my opinion was a major shortcoming. Strong beginning, but I felt like the book trailed off into an overly promotional advertisement of DFA funds toward the conclusion, and no counter-arguments to this approach to portfolio design are addressed. For instance, can DFA funds really be considered passive and what does "passive" even mean? And why is passive desirable, or are the costs of investment management the real issue? The author partially assumed his conclusion. In summary, this is definitely not the only guide to a winning investment strategy you will ever need. I just finished this book as well as All About Asset Allocation by Richard Ferri. While more dense, Ferri's book is a much more practical, data driven guide, and better organized than this book. In fairness to Swedroe, I've learned a lot from reading his views and his columns on ETF.com are excellent, but I was disappointed by this book.
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on February 12, 2018
Excellent book and worth many times whatever you pay to get it. I wish I had read it in high school and you will feel the same way. It's full of clear, unbiased and useful advice about how to invest for retirement and why you should start NOW. Read this book and ignore the hype in the financial magazines and on television from people who want to make money FROM you, not FOR you.
Thank you, Mr Swedroe. In my estimation, you are right up there with John Bogle and the Bogleheads for your good sense and integrity.
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on February 7, 2009
This book is 2004 the investment book of the year. Its philosophy is based on the principles of modern portolio theory (MPT) and the efficient market hypothesis (EMH). It provides a road map to a long term winning investment strategy. It clearly lays out the case against active management (stock picking and market timing) and for passive management, and it explains why diversification is the winning strategy. Following this road map will make you a better informed and more effective investor. Part 1 provides the evidence why active strategies are called the loser's game. Part 2 describes how markets really work. The remainder of the book explains how to implement the winning strategy in a way that will meet your ability, willingness and perhaps, most important, your need to take risk. It describes how you can win the investment game through long term investments in such indexes such as the S&P 500 or Wilshire 5000 instead of through the active buying and selling. It is more productive to invest an stay invested. As Warren Buffett said:" We continue to make money when snooring than when active. Also, passive investors as a group earn higher after tax returns than active investors. As Bogle stated: "As the logicians would say, QED. So it is demonstrated". Digest this book and you will be rewarded accordingly.
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on March 31, 2017
This is a must for personal investment finance for retirees and those working toward a healthy retirement.
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on February 26, 2008
Every investor wants to be smart,pick that promising stock nobody knows about, beat the markets, cash in all these profits and talk about the success at the next dinner party. Well, there are thousands of those individuals out there, stock brokers, mutual fund managers, wealth advisors - you name it - all hunting for the same, day by day, long hours a day, all year long....One or two even maybe smarter than you. No way to beat that. The desire to beat the market by actively managing portfolios is called "the loser's game". Now, what's the solution ?

Larry Swedroe has done sincere research on the topic and is coming to the conclusion that investing in index funds, passively managed funds and similar vehicles is the smartest way to participate in the big picture,the markets.On the long run the most profitable and cost saving too.This is called the "winner's game".These investments usually are available on a cost basis less than 1% opposed to actively managed funds with annual cost of up to several % p.a. These annual cost are you paying regerdless whether or not the markets are going up or down.
No banker, broker or wealth advisor ever has mentioned this strategy to me. For good reason: they almost don't make money with those.
The book among other topics is talking about one's ability to take risks, about the diversication of risk, even gives some examples for portfolios based on different risk levels. An much much more.

The reading is easy, enjoyable and very convincing. The only negative I have to say about this book is:I deeply regret not having had the opportunity to read something like that some years earlier.Thank you Larry!
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on March 19, 2014
One of the best investment books I have ever read, and I have read many. An excellent long term strategy for passive asset class investing consistent with academic Modern Portfolio Theory. Winning Investment Strategy is written in a clear and entertaining style, with ample data to support its foundation as well as examples, stories and analogies to drive its point home.

I recommend this book and John Bogle's The Little Book of Commonsense Investing to anyone interested in really learning how to invest for a lifetime without getting trapped by Wall Street's self-serving hype machine.
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on May 14, 2017
Love this product! Quality as described~
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on April 5, 2005
Quite simply, this is the best investment book I have ever read.

A do-it-yourself investor for the last 15 years, I have read broadly in the area of investment, both books and periodicals. I am throwing out most of my financial literature, and replacing it with this single volume.

The book promotes Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT), which espouses exclusively passive investments (index mutual funds, index ETFs) over a variety of asset classes. An enormous body of research is cited supporting MPT. The author explains the theory's underpinnings in ordinary, clear language, sprinkling the narrative with anecdotes, concrete real-life situations, metaphors, history, famous and not-so-famous quotes, making it easy to understand the theory and its applications in the real world. The clarity, factual underpinnings, and logic behind MPT make it rationally irresistible.

As strong as the book is on theory, it is equally strong as a how-to manual. The author outlines a meticulously detailed, step-by-step plan for implementing MPT, making it an effective investing tool for an individual willing to take the time and effort.

Maximum benefits can be achieved from the book by those willing to be honest with themselves and face their own shortcomings. "No man ever understands quite his own artful dodges to escape from the grim shadow of self-knowledge." --Joseph Conrad. Willingness to acknowledge one's own mistakes is needed in order to accept the wisdom delivered by the book and to embark on the rational strategy it describes.
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on July 18, 2015
Larry does an excellent job of explaining investing for anyone.
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on September 21, 2006
I am experienced at investing and reading books on it. Noting admiration for Swedroe frequently over years, I was curious to find this book among very few recommended by AAII, a group I belong to, whose advice I generally, though not uncritically, accept. Swedroe peppers his text with striking quotes from history and the industry. He has reworked his themes repeatedly. He resonates with William Bernstein, Burton Malkiel, Jeremy Siegal and other primary investment researchers. With them he defends unmanaged funds that use broad asset class diversification. What he writes isn't all new to me, but it will raise your hair in disbelief and make you laugh. He clarifies the self-interest, recency, fads and scams that pit the field of investment. An example: Morningstar doesn't adjust for survivorship bias. So! A sacred cow has been grazing MY backyard!
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