The best books on stock investing

I read a lot and am highly passionate about the subject of stock investing. The following are the books that I consider a must read for almost all stock market ‘investors’ . Here I will give a short summary to each of these books. However I do plan on having detailed reviews on each of them later on.

1. The Little Book That Still Beats The Market by Joel Greenblatt

I usually recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn stock investing. However, I strongly believe that both new and old investors will benefit from the wisdom shared in the book. Greenblatt explains the logic and the irrationality of the markets using such a simple language that even a school going kid should be able to understand it.

2. Beating The Street by Peter Lynch

The celebrated Peter Lynch of the Fidelity Magellan fund demonstrates how a basic layman using common sense can actually beat the experts from Wall Street. Just like most other books I like it is written in very simple and easy to understand language. I plan on reading this book again very soon. Usually this is the second book I recommend to people.

3. The Little Book That Builds Wealth by Pat Dorsey

This is the type of book that I fall in love with. Easy to read, small and has a world of information. Don’t be fooled by the gimmicky title of the book as I rate it within the 3 best books on investing I ever read. The book explains the concept of sustainable competitive advantage (aka economic moat) that brings superior returns

4. The Little Book of Value Investing by Christopher H. Browne

Another brilliant book on value investing from the little book, big profits series. Explains the concept of value investing crisply. A great book by a great investor.

5. Market Wizard Series by Jack D. Schwager

There are four books in this series. Each of them are filled with interviews with some of the best traders and investors. From Ray Dalio to Joel Greenblatt to Paul Tudor Jones, Mr Schwager has interviewed them all. And these are not the typical interviews that we read. Each of them have very insightful and deep questions and answers.

6. Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits by Philip A. Fisher

Phil Fisher can be considered as one of the gurus of fundamental investing. Many great investors in the world have mentioned him as an influence. His strategy of a holistic approach to fundamental due diligence by not only looking at a company but also studying the suppliers, customers and competitors has become the gold standard in the equity analysis world.

7. You Can Be a Stock Market Genius by Joel Greenblatt

The ultimate guide to special situation (mergers, acquisitions, spin-offs, divestitures) investing. Greenblatt outdoes himself with this book and proves clearly that the efficient market hypothesis is a myth even in the highly developed markets. Special situations very often lead to irrationality in valuation and these can be exploited by the clever investor.

8. The Essays of Warren Buffet by Warren Buffet

This is a compilation of the letters Warren Buffet wrote to his shareholders. The letters have been organized according to category. The reader will clearly understand why this man is one of the richest people in the world.

9. Best practices for Equity Research Analysts by James Valentine

Hands down the best book on equity research. Short, compact and highly practical guide for both buy and sell side analysts.  A must read for all investors in my opinion. It might be a bit hard to apply in real life but the book title clearly mentions that these are the ‘best practices’.

10. Margin of safety by Seth A. Klarman

Another excellent book on value investing. The author shows with theory, logic and practical examples why investment fads are pretty much always bogus. The best way to make money is to have a strong disciplined fundamental analysis approach.


Asif Khan, CFA

Asif Khan is presently a Research Analyst (Financial Sector) for Exotix which is a frontier market focused investment bank. He has more than 6 years of work experience as equity analyst in both buy and sell side roles across Asian frontier markets. Asif is a CFA Charterholder and has a dual major in Finance & Economics from North South University.

10 thoughts on “The best books on stock investing

  1. Great post, but its Warren Buffett (I am sure its a typo). Also surprise to notice that Ben Graham’s The Intelligent Investor and Security Analysis didn’t make the cut (or may be you are in process of adding more books).


    1. Thanks for your comment. I knew this question was coming because Graham is considered the father of fundamental investing. Let me give the reasons why I did not ‘yet’ include them.

      1. I haven’t finished reading these two books. I did start but felt that the times have changed a bit and the type of value opportunities Graham found back in the days no longer exist (even though the principles are the same).

      2. More importantly, many of the authors highlighted here are disciples of Benjamin Graham and have adopted his suggestions. They took it a bit further to make them more relevant to today’s age and time. Therefore, even though Securities Analysis and Intelligent Investor did not make the list they are surely being represented to some extent.

      I do however plan on reading them both and after reading them I will add them.

  2. I have read a few from the list and I can honestly say that most of what I know about investing comes from books. And although in my opinion The Intelligent Investor and Security Analysis are a little complex for beginners, I think every investor should read them atleast once in their lives. In addition to the ones in the list, I’d like to suggest Stocks for the Long Run (Jeremy Siegel), Peter Lynch’s One up on Wall Street (which despite its name has little to do with Wall Street) and Liar’s Poker by Michael Lewis. The last one is not solely about investing but it’s is the most entertaining book about trading I’ve ever read in my life.

  3. Agree with your comment on Intelligent Investor and Security Analysis. Jeremy Siegel’s book is on my reading list and I didn’t get the time to read it. As for the Peter Lunch book I think its redundant since I already mentioned “Beating the Street”. These two books have very similar content.

    Liar’s Poker is not exactly an investing book but will feature on a different list of finance books including Boomerang, Fooling some of the people all of the time etc.

    1. Glad that you mentioned both of Peter Lynch’s books have nearly the same content because I didn’t read Beating the Street yet.

      True, Liar’s Poker isn’t about investing, but I mentioned it for two reasons.

      1. It taught me how traders shouldn’t behave and the kind of mentality investors shouldn’t harbor.

      1. More importantly, I realized how Wall Street is not what I thought it was. Although it’s set in the 1980s, the culture of institutions that control the global financial system hasn’t changed much even recently. The fall of big financial institutions like Bear Sterns and Lehman Brothers was pretty much caused by similar practices portrayed in the book.

  4. I have read and finished ‘The little book that beats the market’ and ‘The little book that builds wealth’ after your suggestion Asif bhai. I hereby salute you sir for these awesome recommendations.

  5. Good stuff! I stumbled upon your blog trying to find CFA level 3 exam tips and now as I am going through it I am finding more and more interesting/useful stuff in here. Kind of felt compelled to congratulate and thank you for taking this initiative to educate and share your knowledge with others!

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