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The Intelligent Investor: The Definitive Book on Value Investing [Paperback]

Benjamin Graham
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
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Book Description

June 24 2003 0060555661 978-0060555665 REV

More than one million hardcovers sold
Now available for the first time in paperback!

The Classic Text Annotated to Update Graham's Timeless Wisdom for Today's Market Conditions

The greatest investment advisor of the twentieth century, Benjamin Graham taught and inspired people worldwide. Graham's philosophy of "value investing" -- which shields investors from substantial error and teaches them to develop long-term strategies -- has made The Intelligent Investor the stock market bible ever since its original publication in 1949.

Over the years, market developments have proven the wisdom of Graham's strategies. While preserving the integrity of Graham's original text, this revised edition includes updated commentary by noted financial journalist Jason Zweig, whose perspective incorporates the realities of today's market, draws parallels between Graham's examples and today's financial headlines, and gives readers a more thorough understanding of how to apply Graham's principles.

Vital and indispensable, this HarperBusiness Essentials edition of The Intelligent Investor is the most important book you will ever read on how to reach your financial goals.

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Among the library of investment books promising no-fail strategies for riches, Benjamin Graham's classic, The Intelligent Investor, offers no guarantees or gimmicks but overflows with the wisdom at the core of all good portfolio management.

The hallmark of Graham's philosophy is not profit maximization but loss minimization. In this respect, The Intelligent Investor is a book for true investors, not speculators or day traders. He provides, "in a form suitable for the laymen, guidance in adoption and execution of an investment policy" (1). This policy is inherently for the longer term and requires a commitment of effort. Where the speculator follows market trends, the investor uses discipline, research, and his analytical ability to make unpopular but sound investments in bargains relative to current asset value. Graham coaches the investor to develop a rational plan for buying stocks and bonds, and he argues that this plan must be a bulwark against emotional behavior that will always be tempting during abrupt bull and bear markets.

Since it was first published in 1949, Graham's investment guide has sold over a million copies and has been praised by such luminaries as Warren E. Buffet as "the best book on investing every written." These accolades are well deserved. In its new form--with commentary on each chapter and extensive footnotes prepared by senior Money editor, Jason Zweig--the classic is now updated in light of changes in investment vehicles and market activities since 1972. What remains is a better book. Graham's sage advice, analytical guides, and cautionary tales are still valid for the contemporary investor, and Zweig's commentaries demonstrate the relevance of Graham's principles in light of 1990s and early twenty-first century market trends. --Patrick O'Kelley


“By far the best book on investing ever written.” (Warren Buffett)

“If you read just one book on investing during your lifetime, make it this one” (Fortune)

“The wider Mr. Graham’s gospel spreads, the more fairly the market will deal with its public.” (Barron's)

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fresh Look at an Investment Classic June 12 2006
When it comes to the subject of investment, one cannot speak about it without mentioning the household name, Warren Buffett. After all, this is a man who had made himself the second richest man in the world solely by investing money in companies. It is through learning more about Buffett that lead me to Benjamin Graham and his investment classic, The Intelligent Investor. In this 2003 updated edition, supplementary commentaries and footnotes were added throughout the book by Jason Zweig, a senior writer at Money magazine. This updated edition offers a fresh look at an investment classic, and convinces the reader that the book is still relevant 33 years after Graham’s last revision.

Let me begin then with an observation. Nowadays, just about everybody who has worked a day job knows about putting their money in the stock market. There are some who does it out of greed, some out of fear, but the vast majority does it just because everybody else is doing the same thing! It appears to me that only a tiny group of minorities are really making intelligent investment decision. What about the rest? They buy/sell when they feel like it. Emotion is their chief investment advisor, and they listen to it religiously. Is it any wonder that the financial market behaves the way it does? Good news, because one will learn from Graham that the sillier the market’s behavior, the greater the opportunity for the business-life investor.

Graham begins by laying out the foundational definition of investment versus speculation. “An investment operation is one which, upon thorough analysis, promises safety of principal and an adequate return. Operations not meeting these requirements are speculative.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really easy to understand for newbie investor Oct. 23 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I actually have the PDF file of this book (on my smartphone and tablet), but I think it's just not the same comparing to reading the paperback version. I actually hope they would make it hard cover, with stronger and durable paper materials since you will read it many many times.

I have novels in similar construct before and they tend to fall apart after couple of years. I guess I will buy another book if that does happen.

The content of the book of course is top notch, it feels like a nice conversation with Ben himself (along with little insert from his students). I have the PDF version of the book a year ago, been buying and testing many different stocks based on Graham teaching and have return anywhere from 30 to 150 percent (he is really conservative on his stock selection, but the main thing is mentality and not to sway by the market). I guess most of fund managers on wall street are too impatient for this type of investing techniques.

I am thinking about not making contribution to RRSP funds in the future, and just self direct TFSA trading all the way until I retire.
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39 of 48 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Classic book, but annoying commentaries June 29 2004
By A Customer
I was deciding between getting this edition or the more expensive hardbound edition (which does not contain the Jason Zweig commentaries). I naturally thought, why not go for the cheaper one and get the commentary for free? After all, I could just ignore the commentary if it doesn't help.
Bad bad choice. It was like choosing between a Beethoven CD and the same CD but with free shrieking commentary by a Damon Wayans movie character during and in between each symphony.
Zweig's writing when inserted between Graham's is like the annoying paperclip in MS Office, except there is no way to turn it off. He's in the footnotes (virtually every page!), he's in between every chapter. Open the book at a random page, and most likely you'll open it to a Zweig page.
The content and style of his writing feels condescending and contrasts so much with Graham's. When reading Graham you have elegant timeless prose by a humble, wise man who makes you feel he is sincerely interested in your well-being. By contrast, Zweig feels like someone who wants to impress you with his word plays, and puns. He really should have attempted to recede into the background and limited his voice.
I would recommend everyone to just buy the hardcover edition.
Buy Graham only. If you cannot read Graham, Zweig will only help marginally, and you still need to verify his comments against other contemporary Graham commentators. Get another book. If you *can* read Graham, then you do not need the commentaries in this book. Any questions you may have can be answered in thousands of sites on the net.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A worthwhile read, with relevant commentary July 13 2003
Graham's writing is clear, concise and level-headed. He warns against unreasonable financial expectations and proceeds to explain his theories in sufficient detail to be worthwhile, without being over the comprehension of the layman interested in investing.
The book is lengthy and "solid", as opposed to other finance books that hope to explain investment in 100-200 pages. Topics include stocks vs. bonds, inflation, security analysis, and margin of safety (Graham's analysis of the assets of a company in relation to its debt). Zweig's commentary is useful, with footnotes to clarify historical references and, occasionally, demonstrate instances where Graham's predictions proved untrue. At the end of each chapter, Zweig uses recent (up to early 2003) examples of Graham's concepts to make things clearer to modern readers. (Graham's text itself is his 1973 revision to the original 1949 edition.) Also helpful are numerous references to online articles at various sites (I cannot yet vouch for these links' present state.)
Based on my understanding, I highly recommend this edition to anyone interested in this book. I feel that I gleaned more from this annotated edition than I would have from the original, without having to conduct additional research.
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Most recent customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars It's more of a life lesson by James Buffett rather ...
It's more of a life lesson by James Buffett rather than providing real insight and expertise on his choices which made him a billionaire. Read more
Published 6 days ago by Abdul Khan
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great book! Definitely worth reading many times over.
Published 20 days ago by A. Florea
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for value investors !
As a pure beginner in matter of investing, I must say that this book was very helpfull. I adored the fact that the chapter are commented by Jason Zweig which made the lecture a lot... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Julien
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by Pengcheng Chen
5.0 out of 5 stars Good complement to Security Analysis
Even if some macro parts of this book are outdated now, the principles of value investing explained in this book are timeless. It's a good complement to the Security Analysis book. Read more
Published 2 months ago by JF B
5.0 out of 5 stars Must read for value investors.
It's all in the title.
Published 2 months ago by Sean Simpson
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Timeless advice on investing. A must for all the family.
Published 3 months ago by Jim Lepp
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good book to be read!
Published 3 months ago by Chemljb
5.0 out of 5 stars Still Valid Today.
This book is a very helpful discussion of the basic philosophy of SENSIBLE investing. Graham explains why preservation of capital is a vital component of any investment plan, and... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Keith Crossland
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT BOOK WITH GREAT PRICE
Great price and fast delivery.
Great book to read as an introductory investment book.
Definitely should buy one if you don't have one.
Published 5 months ago by Pillip Lee
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