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Winning Investors Over: Surprising Truths About Honesty, Earnings Guidance, and Other Ways to Boost Your Stock Price Hardcover – November 15, 2011
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The book is a model of clear organization and is written in a breezy style. In 14 succinct chapters, with summaries and takeaways, it makes a persuasive case for transparent dealings between corporations and their shareholders, arguing that deviations from the straight and narrow will be punished sooner rather than later.” Strategy + Business
Lev has written an enjoyable and informative handbook for those who wish to learn how best to win investors over and what kind of information genuinely influences the price of a stock.” Financial Analyst Journal
Unlike many other academics, Lev writes entertaining and free-flowing prose that makes Winning Investors Over an enjoyable read” Enterprising Investor/CFA Institute
excellent new book ” - The Economist
The book offers valuable counsel on how to manage investors' expectations and reactions through policies of forthrightness. And, from an investor's standpoint, it provides a valuable window on how such policies should be pursued.” his latest book, is a serious survey of recent academic literature on corporate and capital-markets behavior, supported by his own fresh research, all synthesized into a set of digestible principles for corporate managers seeking to cultivate healthy and mutually beneficial relations with investors and analysts.” Barron’s
5/5 Every board member should read this book.” Professional Manager magazine
Lev’s wisdom is pithy and profound.” Business Outlook India
this is a very good book indeed with real practical application.” It’s worth a look.” - Investor Relations Society
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Top Customer Reviews
Out of the text's many discussions I think I appreciated the one on how to handle corporate social responsibility (CSR) issues the most. Managers or not, most people strive to follow the informal motto of Google; "don't be evil" and within the corporate sector, as the author points out, the CSR movement has won the battle of ideas. Hence CSR issues must be addressed by management. At the same time the thought that companies should serve all stakeholders, not only shareholders, poses a problem. As professor Michael Jensen so eloquently puts it "It is logically impossible to maximize in more than one dimension at the same time ... whereas [shareholder] value maximization provides corporate managers with a single objective, stakeholder theory directs corporate managers to serve `many masters.' And ... when there are many masters, all end up being shortchanged." Why is this so serious? The reason is that the productivity improvements driven by the effort to enhance shareholder value is the very engine of wealth that has brought humanity from the dark middle ages to where we are today in the so called developed markets. We should never take this relatively comfortable and secure life for granted. Without corporate productivity we'll very quickly be on a slippery slope downwards. The author insists on placing shareholders as the prime stakeholders in the company and first proposes that the CSR initiatives that also benefit the bottom line naturally should be undertaken (this also includes insurance like measures that prevent CSR mishaps that risk to harm profits). That's an easy one. What if there is no shared value creation? Lev's proposal is that initiatives "which the company can do substantially better, in benefit-to-cost terms, than its shareholders" is worth perusing. I don't agree, as it were, but I appreciate the attempt to a logical and structured approach.
Other topics covered include how to handle activist investors, a very good discussion on manager compensation that touch on the disturbingly weak relationship between performance and pay, an equally useful analysis on weather shareholders really are as short sighted as they are portrayed (no, they're not), the tyranny of `ticking the box' corporate governance, shareholder information and, for a European, a scary tour of class action lawsuits. Solid discussions overall even though they at times have a slight academic ivory tower feel. The subtitle of the book is "Surprising truths about honesty, earnings guidance, and other ways to boost you stock price". The boosting angle is my prime objective to the first part of the book. An effective earnings call is described as one that creates an immediate share price increase and Lev gives advice on how to achieve this and on page 37 the advice is that "Unless the earnings shortfall is small and temporary, you should resist quick fixes [...] for the sake of making the numbers." Ouch. Given the sound advice in other parts of the book, examples like these give a slightly schizophrenic impression. All in all this is a practical, guided tour into the strange land of the stock market - it could have been more stringent though.
This is a review by investingbythebooks.com
- How do you deal with guidance and earnings calls in a way that is best for your company? (Doesn't EVERY executive need to know that?)
- How much should you report? Should you go beyond the requirements? - when and why?
- What should you do with activist shareholders? When are they helpful? How do you avoid being derailed from your goals?
- What is the most effective way to manage CSR?
And... it's both thoroughly researched and referenced, and smoothly written!
Grab this book! Read it! Send Lev and his group flowers and exotic tea! What a huge contribution he has made here, truly.
The author has a clear writing style and is bold in making recommendations. This is in sharp contrast to books where the authors are afraid to state their positions succinctly.
Most of the hot topics are discussed in the book, such as: financial reporting practices, corporate governance, executive compensation, audit committee, corporate social responsibility,... For every topic, at the end of the corresponding chapter, a to do list is provided with operating instruction on how to satisfy investor.
While this book is primarily aimed at corporate managers, investors, financial analysts and business students, the continuous reference to solid empirical research (1/4 of the book is dedicated to endnotes) will also be of great help to first year phd students who are looking for a big picture into what drives corporate value in today's capital markets.
Definitely a must read for corporate executives.