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Super-Money Mass Market Paperback – 1972
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If you have worked in the financial industry or love stock market history you will probably eat this up. If your interest in finance is on the practical side then you can safely give this a pass. It reads like Warren Buffett (who is frequently mentioned) is talking to you. I couldn't put it down. It is very hard to describe because it is a series of conversations, choices, and confrontations to the reader. We are eavesdropping on ideas about investing, Swiss bank accounts, money management, politics and much more. The book is not linear at all. It does explain and show the concept of "Super Money" which is really leveraged money very well. That idea is not nearly as transformational now as it was in the 1970's but here it is well-explained in a very compelling narrative. The more familiar you are with the behind the scenes world of finance the more you will appreciate the profound insights of the author. The wisdom of the message makes this book an absolute classic.
* "Assume a can opener" is a catchphrase used to mock professionals, particularly economists, who base their conclusions on unrealistic or unlikely assumptions and tend to oversimplify problems. "A physicist, a chemist and an economist are stranded on an island, with nothing to eat. A can of soup washes ashore. The physicist says, 'Let's smash the can open with a rock.' The chemist says, 'Let's build a fire and heat the can first.' The economist says, 'Let's assume that we have a can-opener...'"
Anyway, this book has stuck with me all of those years for one over-riding principle...SuperMoney. What is SuperMoney? SuperMoney is the money you get when you leverage your own investment in your business into a publicly-traded company, and multiply it many times over.
Let's say you have a clever idea, and start a business. Let's say it's a furniture company, called, oh, I don't know, maybe Levitz Furniture (Levitz furniture, now defunct, pioneered the furniture warehouse concept. Some people will remember the musical slogan, 'You'll love it at Levitz!). This is an example from the book.
Anyway, you start this company. It's successful. You open a couple more branches. They are successful. You decide to incorporate and sell stock. The financial community suddenly falls in love with the idea of a furniture superstore, because they've never heard of such an idea before.
Now, your company, which started out pretty small, now has lots of people bidding up your company's stock. It turns out to be a hot stock. Since you started the company, you own most of the stock. Congratulations, my friend, you now have wheelbarrows full of money. SuperMoney! Remember the fancy furniture store that would never buy your mass-market furniture, with the owner who held his nose up in the air? Want revenge? Buy it! Use your new-found wealth, SuperMoney. Just sell off some of your stock, or have the company issue more stock and use that to trade for the assets of the hoity-toity company. Fire the manager who used to look down at you!
Or let's say you own a big, but boring utility company. Yes, you are rich, but nobody invites you to flashy parties where starlets (yes, that is a word) flit around and the champagne flows like water. Peel off some of that SuperMoney, and buy, I don't know...maybe a movie studio! Or maybe a fancy winery selling wines whose names you can't pronounce! Or maybe a super-snooty hotel where the restaurant sells $100 dinner courses!
It's a whole new world out there, isn't it? SuperMoney!
Highly recommended. This is an extremely entertaining book that explains the often arcane concepts such as leverage and publicly-traded companies in fun and illuminating (and real) examples.
Willie Sutton used to say he robbed banks because that's where the money was. Why risk jail time when you can be wealthier than you ever dreamed possible...just read this book, and come up with something new and catchy...
Most recent customer reviews
I came across Supermoney in a list of investment books. I forget whose list recommended it, but suspect it was more than one.Read more