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The Winning Investment Habits of Warren Buffett & George Soros Paperback – August 22, 2006

4.4 out of 5 stars 64 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


"Tier adopted the investment habits of Warren Buffett and George Soros, sold his business interests and now lives solely from the return on his investments" -- Bloomberg 
"One of the most readable and informative investment books for a long time" -- Lloyd's List
"EXCELLENT!" -- Richard Russell, editor, Dow Theory Letters

"Mark Tier's mapping of investment genius is simply masterful. What lifts his book even further is his infectious delight in discovery and clarity of explanation as he hands you the attitudinal and behavioral keys to becoming the consummate investor." -- David Gordon, author, Expanding Your World: Modeling the Structure of Experience

"...a stunningly simple, but highly intelligent and effective idea: Analyze the methods of Buffett and Soros and see exactly why they're so successful. Soros's and Buffett's methods are often so different -- yet, as Tier shows, the keys to their success are amazingly similar" -- Doug Casey, editor, International Speculator

"Demonstrates that Buffett and Soros both practice exactly the same mental habits and strategies" -- What Investment

"What do Warren Buffett and George Soros have in common besides their self-made investment fortunes? Well, neither takes big risks or diversifies.... Instead, both are cautious investors who have learned how to protect their capital. Oh, and neither follows analyst reports--ever." -- U.S. News & World Report 

“...Tier teaches readers to invest smartly by delving into the skills, philosophies & investment strategies of some of the world's richest self-made men...” ―Publishers Weekly

“[He] has chronicled the mental habits that made Buffett and Soros the world's richest investors – and allowed him to give up the rat-race.” ―Jennifer Hill, The Scotsman

“One of the most exciting investment books to come down the pike in a while.” ―Laissez Faire Book Review

“…Tier's approach is especially valuable because Soros's and Buffett's methods are so often different- yet, as Tier shows…amazingly similar. Great book – something I rarely say about this genre.” ―Doug Casey, editor, International Spectator.

“...great read…I recommend it…gets to the essential reasons for the investment success of Soros and Buffett better than any other book I have read…” ―Chris Weber, editor, The Weber Global Opportunities Report

“Tier has written an excellent book. His chapter on exit strategies alone...is worth the price of the book.” ―Dr. Mark Skousen, editor, Forecasts & Strategies

From the Author

While writing The Winning Investment Habits of Warren Buffett & George Soros, I got to know two highly successful investors very well. Part of my research was analyzing their investment habits to check the accuracy of my analysis.

I also met several novice investors, analyzing their poor investment habits to contrast with the successful ones.

I gave copies the manuscript to all of them, and asked them all for their comments.

Here's how I expected they would react:
  • The successful investors would come back and tell me where it sucked -- where I'd made mistakes, bloopers, and so on;
  • The novice investors would use it to improve their investment results.
Boy, was I wrong!

One point of clarification: just how successful were these two successful investors?

Both these men had achieved independent wealth through their investing. One, then in his sixties, was twenty when he arrived on Wall Street and became a millionaire before he turned thirty -- by investing on his own account, not hustling investments to others. The second started a bit later, but was also independently wealthy.

Both had made enough money from their investments to sit on their thumbs for the rest of their lives.

I had learnt from them -- what could they learn from me? Nothing at all, I assumed.

They both thought differently: 
  • "Here is a different way of looking at the investing process. Maybe I'll learn something."
They both went through all 23 Winning Investment Habits carefully, comparing my analysis with their own behaviors. They checked the 12 components of the successful investment system against their own approach.

One of them tweaked his exit strategy, based on my exposition.

This is, unquestionably, the greatest compliment I've ever received on this book.

Compare that reaction to that of "Henry," whose reaction was typical of several novice investors I talked with.

I spent enough time with Henry to get to know him reasonably well. In his early twenties, he had accumulated about $10,000 and had been investing on the stock market for about a year. His results weren't appalling, but he'd have done better if he'd left his money in a index fund. 
His reaction to the manuscript: "Interesting."

That's it!

Did he apply the habits, or attempt to?


Did it make him think more deeply about his strategy or anything else related to his investments?

Not as far as I could tell.

id it make any difference to his life?

Aside from an enjoyable read, not in any discernable way.

A psychological attack on would-be traders?

A few reviews of The Winning Investment Habits of Warren Buffett & George Soros are rather, how shall I put it? -- decidedly uncomplimentary.

One (on Amazon.co.uk) describes The Winning Investment Habits as a "psychological attack on would-be traders."

As far as I can tell, all I did was point out that trading is far more stressful than investing.

When you're under pressure, you're more likely to make mistakes.

When the pressure is unrelenting, you can burn out.

Traders burn out; investors don't.

Even Soros burnt out; Buffett never has.

Soros learnt how to deal with stress, partly by delegating some or all of the responsibility to others and acting as "coach" rather than trader. The result: he can come back into the saddle when necessary, totally refreshed.

Which is exactly what he did in the middle of the financial crisis of 2008. He took back control of his Quantum Fund: while everyone else on Wall Street was losing their shirts, he was up over 30% for the year.

If you're so good, why write a book?

Fair question.

I wrote this book because I'm a writer. That's what I love to do. The best way for me to learn something is to write about it.

Writing this book was the end of a long quest for the keys to successful investing. In the process of identifying the 23 Winning Investment Habits I realized my problem wasn't a lack of knowledge; the problem was me. My own mental habits. I worked hard to change them. The result: the returns from my investments now pay the rent, send the kids to school, put food on the table, and so on.

Every morning, I can choose to do with my day whatever I wish (including sleeping in).

Mostly, I choose to write.

Wouldn't you like have a life like that?

If I can do it, so can you.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; Reprint edition (August 22, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312358784
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312358785
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #462,812 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I am surprised that this book doesn't get the attention that it so rightly deserved. This is indeed a hidden gem! I have read dozens of investment books over the years and this book definitely belongs to my all-time top 5 must read. The writing is simply amazing with investment advices that are clear, succint and easily applicable to our own investment situations.

The book caters to a broad audience with investment advices that will prove beneficial to even the most seasoned investors. Beginners will love the book's approach detailing a step-by-step mental checklist to go through when making investment decisons. I am truly impressed by the author's careful research of coming out with 23 winning habits employed by the world's most successful investors including Warren Buffett and George Soros. I always thought that Warren is a true long-term investor and business owner whereas George is a amazing speculator taking advantages of current market conditions. Their investment philosophies must be worlds apart. Boy, was I wrong. As the author points out, they both have the same 23 winning investment habits as they go thru the same mental checklist when making investment decisions! This book is indeed a revelation.

I won't spoil the party by telling you what the 23 winning habits are. But I promise that each page is a head-turner and you will learn so much and improve your investment record up a notch for every habit that you acquired and practiced. It is one of those rare investment books that I have read cover-to-cover for a great many times and still find the urge to refer back to it. I am sure you will too!
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Format: Paperback
I only see eight reviews at the time I write this, but there must be over a hundred for each of the other much less useful books, particularly anything from the nauseating Kiyosaki collection. Many more new investors (and even experienced ones) could learn so much more from this book than most of the other basic investment books.

Soros is a trader, Buffet is an investor, but they both have similar rules that fly in the face of the wall st. gurus. The book details 23 winning habits of both Soros and Buffet. Among the habits to adopt, the book stresses the need to separate knowledge from understanding, to do away with the traditional "diversity first" nonsense, and to avoid the habit of seeking validation of ones ideas with the gurus. There is also a useful check list at the back of the book for anyone about to take an investment plunge (not just for stocks).

What's more, the author isn't just another fluffy columnist blathering on - he puts his money where his mouth is and, if his bio is to be believed, lives off his investments. Too many other financial writers are themselves financial train wrecks no better than a chimp at picking stocks. This book teaches the value of learning from others but thinking for yourself. Though it might seem painfully obvious, I don't know too many people who truly follow this advice (until now, myself included).

I don't give five star ratings very often, but this book deserves it. If I had to recommend one investment book to anyone, especially a neophyte, this would be it.
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Format: Paperback
I often think about successful investing as consisting of lots of different ingredients. But the key is getting all the ingredients right. Lots of people know some things, but they can't seem to put them all together into a coherent and workable investment style.

Tier's book helps you do that by taking apart and studying the nuances in Warren Buffett's and George Soros's approaches. Toward the back, it also includes a look at Carl Icahn and John Templeton.

Anyway, Tier breaks these styles down into winning habits. They are great fun to read about and Tier finds anecdotes and stories that you may not have heard before.

It's inspiring reading, actually, and it got me thinking about lots of different things successful investors do.

One of my favorite investment books.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I enjoyed reading this book as this was my first dive into the history and investing success of Buffett and Soros. I have read many books since and I think this is a decent read for anyone interested in these two successful investors.

Let me make sure that everyone is clear; this book doesn't disclose any secrets or any inside information on how these guys invest. It’s basically a macro view ex post (after the fact) into their investment styles.

The author does a very good job of identifying the winning investment habits and also providing real life example to support his points.
Here are my top 3.
1) Don’t diversify - when you have done all the analysis and due diligence on an investment, invest with confidence and a decent amount of your portfolio. Theoretically you are planning to hold forever.
2) Invest in good mgmt - the people who run the company are the most important asset. You should seek out companies that have been run well and that mgmt has a long history of success
3) Don't listen to others - don't worry about the "noise" and other experts. Stick with your evaluation and be confident. Don’t listen to anyone on TV as mostly they are entertainment.

I have combined these and other habits mainly position managements and cutting losses into my investment system and I can tell you that these guys know what they are doing.
obviously we don't have the tools that Buffett has but if you read this book you are on your way to sharpen and develop your investing toolbox

At some points this book is a bit dry but overall I highly recommend to anyone who is interested in the not too technical aspects of Buffett's and Soros' investment.
There are no secrets and you can find this stuff elsewhere but the author does a good job of putting everything together.
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