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Famous investors and authors, citations

“Playing to Win – How Strategy Really Works” by A.G. Lafley and Roger L. Martin – a Book Review

Strategy books are so many this year, that you could literally by a dozen by the 10 dollar bill from Amazon. I would go so far as even to say that there are too many. So many strategy tomes are written, that the authors are no longer named “authors”, but “thinkers”, as a new job description… And classified accordingly. (top 50 thinkers, year by year).
“Playing to Win – How Strategy Really Works” (to give the book’s complete name) is actually a very different book in this respect. First of all, “Playing to Win” is written from a practitioner’s perspective. Both authors (A.G. Lafley – by the way, you should buy the book at least for the nice haircut of this gentleman  – and Roger Martin) have created this strategic decision making system during their working life. Actually the system described here was literally applied and developed within Procter & gamble, a fairly successful company overall and a very successful one if e take out the tech sector in the last decade :).

Secondly, the book is written as a Harvard Business Review mega study case. Read More »“Playing to Win – How Strategy Really Works” by A.G. Lafley and Roger L. Martin – a Book Review

“Why I Left Goldman Sachs: A Wall Street Story” by Greg Smith – A Book Review

A search on Google for Goldman Sachs returns 328 million results. Created in 1869, Goldman Sachs rose quickly to be a favorite banks in the US for IPO’s and later for investment banking. Its history was always tied to acquisitions of trading funds and various financial instruments. And of course, during the sub-prime crisis in 2007, Goldman Sachs became even more famous for short-selling mortgage backed securities right before the market for those instruments collapsed. A close competitor of Lehman Brothers, Goldman Sachs allegedly partly maneuvered its sibling into bankruptcy, thus securing an even better position in the investment banking industry. With $29 billion in assets and a surprising repurchase of the government injection of cash into its share, Goldman Sachs remains one of the most mysterious investment banks on Earth.

No wonder that Greg Smith’s financial book (“Why I Left Goldman Sachs: A Wall Street Story”) was expected with so much interest. As an ex-employee of the bank’s New York HQ, Smith was always critical of Goldman Sachs failing its own standards and the bank’s reference of customers such as “muppets” – after he left the bank in 2006. Thus, it comes as no surprise that this account of an investment banker’s life in Sachs is … well… critical of it. It is also not surprising that the book made the no.1 spot for most book retailers, including Amazon.Read More »“Why I Left Goldman Sachs: A Wall Street Story” by Greg Smith – A Book Review

Business Book Review – “Handbook of Corporate Performance Management” – by Mike and Pippa Bourne

Measuring corporate performance has become a hot topics for the boardrooms lately. There is a strange opinion stream that underlines that the correct management tools can actually add value – as opposed to the strategy purists which think that only the 5 P’s of marketing can add value to a company. I myself am often confused, even in practice, since the proofs for each side of the argument are plenty. After all, what is the purpose of a complex management structure beyond controlling and optimizing the business? Is it also to create value by designing, implementing and monitoring a chosen strategy?Read More »Business Book Review – “Handbook of Corporate Performance Management” – by Mike and Pippa Bourne

“Fundamentals of Investment Management” (by Geoffrey Hirt and Stanley Block) – a Financial Book Review

Sometimes you can observe that what you are doing is not really working. Sometimes you think – “what if I would change my methods? What if I would go back to the basics?”. In my opinion, the investments management is not different – no matter how many new investing techniques you learn, no matter how many investment blogs you are reading, you still have to go back to the fundamental theory and revisit it. It is useful to do it at least each couple of years, since the human mind has the nasty habit to forget essential principles. Take a quick test – what do you remember from the high-school mechanics of physics? (please do not do it if you are a physicist :)) ).

McGraw Hill’s handbook called “Fundamentals of Investment Management” is one of those books which make your bookshelf bend, but still you will never ever give up to it, since it is packed with useful references. It takes you from the very basics of the securities and the financial markets, feeding you with lots of definitions and context cases. Nothing really new for McGraw Hill Professional, which stands above other publishing houses for its teaching orientation. What is interesting is its relative completeness – takes you from the tyoes of investments to alternative methods of investing.Read More »“Fundamentals of Investment Management” (by Geoffrey Hirt and Stanley Block) – a Financial Book Review

My Investing Wish List – 2010

Lately I have been craving to read more and more investment books, as a bookworm that I am. Yes, I wear glasses and yes, I am a finance guy. So no wonder that in the last year I have been pilling up tons of investment and finance books – most of them also reviewed here, on www.doitinvest.com.

My favourite publishing house (and this is NOT an advertorial, believe me, the published did not pay a dime for this!) is Wiley – they have nice finance and investing books which seem to cover professionally some of my favourite topics. Wiley has also books which offer you some extra knowledge needed to cope well under the practical conditions of the market, so I think my desire became at a moment self explanatory.

So here’s my favorite finance and investing books wish list – maybe by Christmas somebody from the Wiley Publishing House will pile those up and send them to me in a big postal package! Then I am guaranteed not to leave my house for the whole winter and just to keep on reading!!Read More »My Investing Wish List – 2010

2010 Nobel Prize in Economics vs Ig-Nobel Prize…On Economics Too, of Course

Everybody’s obsessed with finance and the flow of money these days. No wonder that we at doitinvest.com go for the same theme and now wonder that the Nobel committees are looking at the same stuff.
This year the Nobel prize for economics was shared by three gentlemen. The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel 2010 was awarded jointly to Peter A. Diamond, Dale T. Mortensen and Christopher A. Pissarides “for their analysis of markets with search frictions”. The guys looked actually at the imperfections of the markets – why are they not frictionless but full of hidden costs?Read More »2010 Nobel Prize in Economics vs Ig-Nobel Prize…On Economics Too, of Course