©2003 Peter Navarro; (P)2004 Recorded Books
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"Easy to understand for the most part."
This audiobook is well written and easy to understand. I agree that it makes the concepts of economics and investing easy to understand but I have to point out a huge gaff. This is actually very odd since the author is a Harvard Phd. Either the narrator read his lines wrong or the author wrote it wrong: "The strong dollar is inflationary because Americans now have to pay more for imports." >??? (I had to rewind it a few times before to makes sure I heard it right). That's just the opposite of what would happen. Some of the wordage in some areas is a little strange and it makes you want to rewind and hear it over again. Kind of annoying. Aside from that it is very helpful because it really does bring into perspective the Big Picture of investing. I recommend this despite the huge gaff and the imperfect use of English.
"Hardly provides the big picture"
While I believe that having a broad view on investing is very important, I also think that this book doesn't provide that.
It pretends to have both a technical as well as a fundamental approach. But what you sense becomes a reality when you hear in the last chapter the daily routine of Professor Navarro; he gets his fundamental information from MarketEdge (A stock must be a buy on MarketEdge is one of his criteria).
The book doesn't explain how to fundamentally research a stock. There is (practically) no information on analyzing margins, revenues or a balance sheet. The author states that this is important but doesn't explain how to research this. The same goes for management.
There is a chapter on macro economics which tells you what to look for in the macro economic calendar, but a broad picture on how to interpret this data is missing. Although the book contains some examples on how to interpret inflation data, this part is very fragmented and lacks a coherent framework.
Potential listeners who are familiar with macroeconomics, microeconomics and investing are better off skipping this book. It served as a 'fresh-up' for me but there was nothing in it that was new to me.
Further more, the scope of this book is so wide (investing from A-Z) that there are necessary levels of depth missing on certain topics, as I described above.
If you get started you can use this book as an idea of what investing is about, but beware: your knowledge-level will be way too low to start investing on your own. You do know however, what subjects you need to research further to really understand the 'Big picture'.
One more note I'd like to make is that Prof. Navarro brings his methods as the 'universal truth' to investing. People who are just a little bit familiar with the financial markets know that no such things exists. Everybody needs to find a method that works for him or her. Eventually, everybody gets from the market what they deserve.
"Start your investing education here"
I've been investing for 20 years and still found this information highly useful, relevant and educational. Peter Navarro will take you through common sense discussions regarding investing basics, strategies, a macro view of economic and sector effects, and beyond. A must read for the serious investor.
"Not for casual listening"
This one is going to need all your attention. Download and print the course material, take notes and rewind as often as you need to. the effort will be well rewarded. Plan to spend at least 30-40 hours on this course. It is not one that you can listen to in your car.
"Good for price conscious speculator investors"
I have not read the print edition (I am unsure if there is such an edition in this series, as the series is made up of lecture series from various professors).
Mr. Navarro gives a good run down on how to use macro-economic and geopolitical issues to find investments, and implement investment rules that he believes are superior to your investments. He clearly is the buy high, sell higher approach (unlike the traditional buy low-sell high, or Warren Buffett's approach of buy great businesses selling at good prices, and invest in the business). Mr. Navarro is more a speculator... focused upon the stock price, rather than the fundamentals of the business.
It is also worth noting that parts of the recording is little more than a sales commercial for the publication Investor's Business Daily (based upon the buy high-sell higher speculative approach to investing, based upon his description).
One thing that was kind of annoying: He tries to discredit Warren Buffett's approach of value investing, using an example if you bought Cisco (which had been 100) at 50 dollars thinking it a bargain, you would have lost money as it fell toward 10. Well, Mr. Buffett never bought Cisco at 50... or at 10. If the author wishes to discredit Mr. Buffett's approach to investing (an approach that has made him the 3rd richest man in the world), he should have used actual examples. For example, Mr. Buffett bought Coke at 6.50 per share (in split adjusted terms, it is closer to 3.25 per share) back in 1988. Each three years, he gets more than the purchase price back just in dividends... he isn't selling coke (which is now about 40 dollars per share), instead he has invested in a great business at a good price, and profits from the ongoing profits of the business. That is "investing" (speculating is buying something purely because you think someone else will come along and pay you more for it later... it is the difference between investing in a farm to benefit from the produce of the farm, compared to speculating in the farm land to take advantage of what you think will be rising land prices in the short term).
It is okay if Mr. Navarro wishes to disagree with Mr. Buffett's approach... but it is not intellectually honest to use an example (Cisco) that Mr. Buffett did not invest in (in fact, I believe Mr. Navarro's Buy High sell higher guru at IBD more likely did buy into Cisco), when there are many examples of Mr. Buffett's investments (Coke, American Express, Wells Fargo, GEICO, IBM) that he used his approach on his way to tens of billions of dollars and making a lot of other people rich that invested within him as part of Berkshire Hathaway.
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