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The Bond Book, Third Edition: Everything Investors Need to Know About Treasuries, Municipals, GNMAs, Corporates, Zeros, Bond Funds, Money Market Funds, and More Hardcover – Nov 17 2010


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The Bond Book, Third Edition: Everything Investors Need to Know About Treasuries, Municipals, GNMAs, Corporates, Zeros, Bond Funds, Money Market Funds, and More + In Your Best Interest: The Ultimate Guide to the Canadian Bond Market
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill; 3 edition (Nov. 17 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780071664707
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071664707
  • ASIN: 007166470X
  • Product Dimensions: 16.3 x 3.3 x 23.9 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 590 g
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #295,020 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

About the Author

Annette Thau is a former municipal bond analyst for the Chase Manhattan Bank and a visiting scholar at the Columbia University Graduate School of Business. She has written many articles for the AAII Journal and lectured to groups nationwide. In November 2009, she was a featured speaker at the national meeting of the American Association of Individual Investors.

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Remi Parent on Jan. 5 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I hate to give a bad review to a product in which may not deserve it but this book simply wasn't for me. I think the quality of the information is good if you are really interested in bonds you may very much like this book.

But for the average investor who is just looking at self educating himself without too much fuss I can't recommend this book.. I have bought and read a few other books based on investments such as "the millionaire teacher, The RESP book by Mike Holman, Your life or your money" and they were all interesting to read. This is the first book in which I have not finished because I couldn't take it anymore. 420 pages of bond talk is just too much for me, after 100 pages (and a few skipped pages) I decided to close the book and not look back at it.

If you are seriously interested in BONDS go ahead (this book received excellent overall reviews on amazon.com).

For the first time I am returning a book on amazon :(
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 46 reviews
32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
bonds should be a part of every portfolio July 25 2011
By muddy glass - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
annette thau's "bond book" should be read by every investor who's ever been captivated by the allure of equities and consequently neglected fixed income investments. thau delivers a crystal clear overview of every aspect of the bond market itself, as well as introduces the personalities and traits of the various types of bonds. the third edition of this book also offers the reader an insightful look at the 2008 financial crisis from the perspective of an experienced bond analyst. this is the perfect book to learn about bonds.

first, it is very common for people to overestimate their risk tolerance. like many investors with a long time horizon, i initially toyed with the notion of 100% stocks for the long run (cha-ching!). if retirement is far far away, you should just have no fear, right? or so i naively thought at first. most people need to experience a bad bear market where they sell their stocks low before coming to the sad realization that they needed bonds in their portfolio to face the vicissitudes of the financial markets. it is of course better to prepare yourself before going through such a trial by fire.

thau's book includes everything you'll need to know to decide on exactly how you'll want to set up the bond portion of your portfolio. here's a sampling of the topics covered in her exposition: the bond desk, bond ladders, collateralized debt obligations, convexity, corporate bonds, credit default swaps, duration, the federal reserve, ginnie maes, i-bonds, money market funds, mortgage-backed securities, municipal bonds, prepayment risk, strips, tips, tranches, zeros, and so forth. as with most things in finance, the words might look intimidating at first, but the concepts are not difficult to understand. thau wrote this book with the individual retail investor in mind and she lucidly explains everything. she also compares and contrasts buying individual bonds versus buying bond mutual funds. heck, she even guides you on how to analyze and buy bonds online.

one type of bond that i want to highlight in this review is the series i savings bond, or "i-bond" for short. i-bonds are backed by the government and essentially carry no credit risk. i-bonds keep up with inflation (hence their name). they are tax-deferred on the federal level, and tax-free on the state and local levels. you can buy i-bonds commission free on the treasury direct website (treasurydirect.gov). and on top of all that, there is no risk of losing any of your principal, even during times of deflation. check out the full details on the treasury direct website and/or in thau's book. the positives overwhelmingly outweigh the negatives. i-bonds deserve much wider attention from the investing public.

bonds definitely don't get as much love as stocks. hopefully as you go through thau's "bond book," you'll come to realize that bonds are every bit as intriguing as stocks, perhaps more so. and after getting to know them, hopefully you'll find a suitable place for bonds in your portfolio.
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Belongs in every investor's library July 11 2011
By Ricardo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read what I believe was the first edition of this book quite a few years ago. Oddly, I don't know what ever became of it.

I just finished reading the Kindle version of the current edition which served as a refresher of everything I've learned about fixed-income investing over the years.

While the book probably isn't for the "professional", it will serve as a valuable tool for the beginning investor or anyone who wants to learn more about fixed-income investing.

This is not some "rah, rah, rah, everything is fine" book written by someone with a vested interest in getting investors to line up to buy the latest product. Instead, it provides a very factual and candid explanation of just about every fixed income product an investor would want to buy....and many that they should stay far away from.

This revised edition was written just after the 2008 "financial crisis" and gives quite a bit of background information as to its causes. It should serve as a warning that what many always thought of as safe investments (like money market funds and funds of U.S. Treasuries/agencies) have their own set of risks and aren't a guaranteed investment by any means.

Anyone interested in adding fixed income investments to their portfolios (and that should include every investor) should consider this "required reading".
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
The right balance in a finance book April 8 2011
By Machsnix - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book fulfills the authors stated purpose to write a comprehensive book on bond without getting mired in MBA speak. The author certainly has plenty of (Wall) street cred. She does a very good job of detailing "risk" in bond which is often overlooked by those not familiar with fixed income instruments. I bought it primarily as a reference but it is eminently readable as well. Another excellent book on bonds is, "The Only Guide to a Winning Bond Strategy...." by, Larry Swedroe. Despite the somewhat inflated title it is also a good no-nonsense book as are all of Larry's previous offerings.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
One of the best books out there for investing period. Nov. 17 2012
By Ed Gentile - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is my first review on Amazon. I picked up this book as part of my study program for the Series 65 Exam. This book ranks right up there with Ben Graham's "Securities Analysis"; "Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits" by Phillip Fisher; "A History of Interest Rates" by Sidney Homer; and Bernard Baumohl's "The Secrets of Economic Indicators".

Thau's book contains some historical perspective comparing bonds to stocks, and various classes of bonds: Treasuries, Muni's, and Corporates. The author also gives her two cents with regards to rating agencies and how they are compensated by the issuer creating a "conflict of interest environment" and contributed to the 2008 meltdown. And some of us know that a similar scenerio played out during the mid 1990's, where compensation was tied to research analysts and investment banking clients during the "Internet Bubble" in the area of equities. After the "Interent Bubble" burst in 2000, and the decline in the NASDAQ, followed by the accounting scandals involving Enron and WorldComm to name a few that came to the foreground, did research analysis and compensation become seperated from investment banking and the fees generated by such deals. The book's importance is that the bond market is 3x the size of the stock market as indicated by the author - so this area of investing and its impact is too big to ignore.

For those investors out there that do not own this book: BUY IT! Even if you don't invest in bonds. THE BOND BOOK by Annette Thau is simply a must read for anyone interested in the Financial Markets.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
The Best on this subject April 28 2011
By Folkman - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is the best text out there on the subject of bonds. It is complete and well written. Straight forward and easy to understand.
I have read others, but this is the one I refer to over and over again. It won't teach you how to become rich (any investment book that makes that claim isn't worth buying) but it will tell you how to safely invest your fixed income allocation within the complex debt market.


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