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Security Analysis [Audiobook] [Audio Cassette]

Benjamin Graham , David Dodd
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Oct. 13 2003
This classic book secured Benjamin Graham's status as a Wall Stree immortal.

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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 --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The one book every serious investor should read April 14 2001
At first glance, Security Analysis - one shy of 700 single spaced pages without a single picture other than a smiling Mr. Graham on the cover - appears not for the faint of heart. Inside, however, lies the single greatest book on investing ever written, which remains remarkably readable, insightful and timely nearly seven decades after its first edition. Graham, a successful investor in his own right, was also a highly effective and influential teacher (one of his students named Warren Buffett has done quite well), and his methods and language are refreshingly clear and (believe it or not) concise. The length of the book is due to the breadth of its content, not to any wordiness or unnecessary diversions.
Graham (and his collaborator Dodd) meticulously and methodically builds a framework for the analysis and decision-making necessary for truly good investment decisions. Step-by-step, they lay out a general approach and philosophy for investment (as quite distinct from mere speculation) followed by the systematic analysis of fixed income, convertible and equity securities (i.e., bonds, converts/preferreds, stocks); a detailed discussion of financial statements; and a description of certain underlying differences between the intrinsic value of a business and its fluctuating stock price. As a result, the reader emerges with a solid philosophy and approach for his or her own investments and the analytical tools to make actual buying and selling decisions.
This book is neither a get-rich-quick scheme nor an empty academic exercise. Graham does not set out to justify or theorize about the market. Instead, he sets out to counsel the student on the profitable investment in individual securities.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Speculation, Speculation, Speculation Oct. 26 2001
I think that word, speculation, appears in the book about 1000 times. Graham's investment theory is that if you haven't analytically measured an investment's worth - you are speculating, or, buying into speculative securities. This book is very old and the manner in which the words and phrases were written are a resemblance of this.
There are two major parts to this book: 1) Fixed Income Securities and 2) Stocks. Both are given a considerable amount of analytical consideration and explanation. These writings are detailed as well as very dry and boring. If your looking for an exiting, new-age, kind of book - this is not the one for you. Careful observation and undertanding of the writings is a must in order to successfully learn from Graham's teachings.
I have read both Ben Graham's Security Analysis and Philip Fisher's Common Stocks Uncommon Profits: I am like Warren Buffet in the sense that I am 85% Graham and 15% Fisher. Fisher is mainly a Growth Stock investor while Graham is a Value investor. My portfolio alone is proof that value investing in high-growth stocks averages a far better return than simply buying high-growth stocks at whatever the market price may be at the time - relative to earnings. Like Real Estate investing, you want to buy low and sell high, not buy high and hope it goes higher so you can sell high!
Despite the book's dry and boring format I love the book as it's a great guide in analizing any propestive stock - if you agree with the Value Investing Theory!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Ever Written Sept. 5 2001
This is book has been updated many times (through the fifth edition). If you have read the latest edition, and believe you have read anything like the original, go back and read this one. Once you have read 'Old Ben', you will find other editions very disappointing. That could be why Warren Buffet suggested going back to the original if you want to know what value investing is all about.
Current investment practice, and later editions of this book concentrate on the one thing that Graham said was, if not impossible, very non-productive - estimating future earnings. This book concentrates on understanding proven value. Where one spends most of its time on the income statement, this book spends most of its time on the balance sheet. There is a world of difference, and the difference leads to a much different portfolio, and future.
There is, as the author points out repeatedly, a difference between investment and speculation. There is also a difference between helpful discussion and meaningful analysis. The original edition is full of meaning, written by a practitioner who also could teach. Later editions (especially the fifth) make me wonder how much of the master's works the new authors read before starting. It also makes me question how much influence Donaldson, Lufkin, & Jenrette and Autanet exercised in return for their grant to finance the book.
If you want a great book on investing read the original. It will give you much more insight and at least twice as much 'food for thought'.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Bible of Value Investing March 17 2001
67 years after this initial version of Security Analysis was published, it is still considered a bedrock for value investors. Written in the heart of the 1930s Depression, Benjamin Graham laid down his theories for all areas of investing in this book. With this book he revolutionized the ways in which investors evaluate the potential yield and growth of stocks and other securities.

In this book, Graham gives his theories, backed by many early 20th century examples, most of which are still applicable to today's market. Graham discusses bonds, preferred stocks, some of the original mortgage-backed securities, and other fixed income investments. Then in the latter half of the book, he gives his instructions for investing in common stocks.

This book will be very monotonous to anyone except for serious investors with a solid financial knowledge base. But for those exceptions, it will be very interesting. I think Graham's instructions on reading balance sheets !and income statements to be the most productive thing I gained from this book. For investors who enjoy financial theory and want to learn more about securities research, this book is a must.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Benjamin Graham Investing Classic
It has been a while since I read this book... it is not for the novice or beginner and is very indepth... It is recommended by the likes of none other than Warren Buffet... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Frank Spenrath
5.0 out of 5 stars Packed With Knowledge!
A book that has been continuously in print for nearly 70 years obviously has timeless relevance. The principles of value investing, spelled out for the first time in Security... Read more
Published on June 9 2004 by Rolf Dobelli
1.0 out of 5 stars ripping off graham and dodd
In a moment of confusion, I bought the so-called "fifth edition" of Security Analysis ... what a scam! Read more
Published on Oct. 5 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars The Investor's Guide to Real Security Analysis
I still pick up my copy and marvel at the relevance of this exceptionally-written book.
This book will be beget appreciation from professional and/or passionate fundamental... Read more
Published on April 1 2003 by "mistermarket"
5.0 out of 5 stars Everything after 1934 looks suspicious
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 -... Read more
Published on Feb. 19 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Book On Investing Period.
I have read a plethora of investment texts over the years as an avid businessman and investor in common stocks, and none of them are as complete as Security Analysis by Benjamin... Read more
Published on Dec 28 2002
4.0 out of 5 stars Turbulent times
This book is a masterpiece! It was written during one of America's darkest economic hours,"to date". Read more
Published on Oct. 30 2002
3.0 out of 5 stars A Historical Artifact....
All you need to know about this book is that it was written in 1934. In other words... time has passed it by. Read more
Published on Aug. 23 2002
4.0 out of 5 stars must read
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,... Read more
Published on Aug. 4 2002
This is the BIBLE of security analysis written by Warren Buffett's mentor. It is possibly the most famous book on the market. Read more
Published on Oct. 31 2001 by "stevanus"
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