16 Best Investing Books of All Time: Your Comprehensive Guide
Investing is a world where learning from the experts is the key to understanding how to make smart money decisions. The best investing books of all time are like a treasure chest of knowledge, lessons, and insights that have lasted through the years.
Whether you're an experienced investor or just starting out, this post aims to share with you a collection of amazing books that have shaped the way people think about investing. These books continue to guide investors in reaching their financial goals.
Now that you know what this post is about, let's dive into exploring 16 of the best investing books of all time
Table of Contents
A Comprehensive List of the Best Investing Books of All Time
1. The Intelligent Investor (Revised Edition, 2006)
This book was originally published in 1949 and is praised by Warren Buffett as “By far the best book on investing ever written.”
Before his death, Ben Graham, author of The Intelligent Investor was an acclaimed professor and was considered “the father of value investing”.
The book also features commentary by Wall Street Journalist Jason Zweig in this revised edition.
Graham believed in his margin of safety principle, which meant to buy a stock for less than you believed it was worth.
The authors will explore nearly everything you need to know about stock market investing. Including stock market history, how to interpret market fluctuations (and stay calm during them), comparing stocks and bonds, and more.
He even explains how he beat the market for twenty years and how you can apply these principles and techniques towards your own investment portfolio.
This is why The Intelligent Investor made it onto the list of the best investing books of all time.
2. Security Analysis (Sixth Edition, 2009)
The book “Security Analysis” is considered the bible of investing. Authors Benjamin Graham and David Dodd coined the terms “margin of safety” and “value investing” in this book.
Although first published in 1934, the book's principles are still relevant today. Now in its sixth edition, Security Analysis is enhanced with 200 pages of commentary from some of Wall Street's top money managers.
Featuring a foreword by Warren Buffett, he mentions that he has read this book “at least four times”.
While it is a long and dense book, Security Analysis will bring you up to speed on value investing and prepare you to invest in today's volatile markets.
3. The Little Book on Common Sense Investing (Revised Edition, 2017)
The Little Book on Common Sense Investing author John C. Bogle reveals his secret to get more out of investing—buying into low-cost index funds.
In fact, Bogle was credited with creating the first index fund.
Bogle describes a simple and effective investment strategy for building wealth over the long term. His fund bought and held, at very low cost, all of the stocks that made up a broad index like the S&P 500.
Bogle describes the simplest and most effective investment strategy for building wealth over the long term: buy and hold, at very low cost, a mutual fund that tracks a broad stock market Index such as the S&P 500.
This is one of the best investing books on index funds.
His strategy is even favored by Warren Buffett, who said: “Jack did more for American investors as a whole than any individual I’ve known”.
Bogle offers invaluable guidance that you can use to get your share of stock market returns in a relatively short read.
4. You Can Be a Stock Market Genius (Revised Edition, 1999)
You could say this gem, You Can Be a Stock Market Genius is flying under the radar in terms of stock market books, ranking #89 in Amazon's stock market investing books section.
This book is your “personal treasure map” to special situations in which big profits are possible, covering:
· Merger Securities
· Rights Offerings
· Risk Arbitrage
Researching a finding these opportunities takes a lot of time and work. You'll have to spend a lot of time reading annual reports and otherwise staying up to date with companies to exploit these opportunities.
Perhaps this is why the book isn't very well-known among individual investors.
Nonetheless, Author, Wharton graduate, Colombia University Professor and fund manager Joel Greenblatt, will explore how his fund Gotham Capital has achieved average annual returns of 40% per year since 1985.
5. The Essays of Warren Buffett (Fifth Edition, 2019)
The fourth edition of The Essays of Warren Buffett offers invaluable stock market guidance and a look into the mind of one of the greatest stock market investors of all time.
This is the definitive book on Warren Buffett's views on everything from stock market investing to proper management. This is a curated collection of his famous annual shareholder letters arranged by Lawrence Cunningham in 2015.
Warren Edward Buffett is an American business magnate, philanthropist, and economics graduate at Colombia University. Known for his impressive stock market returns throughout his investment career and is called the “Oracle of Omaha”.
The book states that it features “lessons for corporate America”, but this includes shareholders as well.
6. A Random Walk Down Wall Street (12th Edition, 2019)
Author of A Random Walk Down Wall Street Burton Malkiel knows that you don't need to devote hours every week to manage a successful investment portfolio.
He advocates for low-cost index funds that grow your money on autopilot.
As a Harvard MBA graduate and economics professor at Princeton University, Malkiel knows a thing or two about investing.
This book popularized the term “random walk hypothesis“. This theory suggests that you cannot consistently beat the market and that you're better off investing in low-cost index funds to match the market.
This updated version (published in 2019) also explores the bitcoin bubble, tax management, automated investment advisors, and more.
Malkiel has sold over 1.5 million copies of the book and has established it as the first book to purchase before starting a portfolio or 401(k).
This is one of the best investing books for beginners.
7. The Warren Buffett Way (Third Edition, 2013)
Endorsed by Peter Lynch and Howard Marks (among others), The Warren Buffett Way provides an insight into Buffett’s investment techniques and practices.
The book was originally published in 1994 and is now in its third edition, published in 2013. The third edition contains updated accounts to ensure its relevancy for decades to come.
Tracing Buffett's career from the beginning, Hagstrom told us exactly how, starting with an initial investment of only $100 Buffett built a business empire and has an estimated net worth of $80 billion.
The book explores some of Buffett’s largest and most significant investments and their outcomes, including but not limited to Coca-Cola, GEICO, Wells Fargo, American Express, IBM, and The Washington Post.
The Warren Buffett Way will give you an insight into the techniques and strategies employed by arguably the most successful investor of all time.
It’s a great read, and if you would like to learn more about Warren Buffett and his investment methodology, there is no better place to look.
8. Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits and Other Writings (2nd Edition, 2003)
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits is a concise guide on how to pick growth stocks that have huge growth potential for decades to come.
After graduating from Stanford in 1927, Fisher started his career as a securities analyst in 1928 and founded his investment counseling business in 1931. He is known as one of the pioneers of modern investment theory and is reported to have made his clients extraordinary investment gains over his career. He managed the company’s affairs until his retirement in 1999 at the age of 91.
The book covers Fisher’s illustrious “scuttlebutt” (a fancy word for gossip) strategy. His strategy was based on the belief that every piece of information about a company should be exploited. He believed that through the grapevine, you could paint an accurate picture of any company’s relative strengths and weaknesses.
He also covers what stocks to buy, when to buy, and when to sell, while also teaching you how to apply his ideas to suit your own needs.
Not to mention that Fisher covers his list of 15 things that he would look for in every company before he'd buy their stock.
Fisher's Investment Philosophy
Fisher’s investment philosophy was quite different from the other authors on this list. He preferred growth stocks and would purchase companies with a strong likelihood of increasing their earnings in the future, consequently providing himself and his clients with strong investment returns for decades.
The book was originally published in 1958, while the revised edition was published in 2003. The revised edition includes the perspectives of the author's son Ken Fisher, who is an investment guru in his own right.
This book is a must-read if you're interested in a proven guide to finding growth stocks before their market cap soars.
9. One Up On Wall Street (1989)
In One Up on Wall Street, Wharton MBA graduate and author Peter Lynch explores how there are opportunities everywhere to make money in the stock market. And that anyone “can pick stocks just as well if not better, than the average Wall Street expert.”
In his outspoken way, Lynch covers everything you need to know about stock market investing in these three parts: Preparing to Invest, Picking Winners, and The Long-term View.
Lynch believes it is personal preparation, as much as knowledge and research that separates “the successful stockpicker from the chronic loser.” He explores how he beat the market consistently and provides insights on when to buy, when to sell, what to do when the market collapses—among other invaluable insights.
One Up on Wall Street has sold more than one million copies and was originally published in 1989.
10. The Great Crash 1929 (2009)
First published in 1955, The Great Crash 1929 covers the events leading up to the greatest economic collapse in American History.
Revised in 2009, the book rose once again as Americans sought perspective on the global financial crisis.
Warren Buffett even recommended the book during the 2020 Berkshire Hathaway shareholder meeting.
He recommended the book to people who want to learn more about the events leading up to the 1929 crash, the Great Depression. We can use this information to help us create more robust investment strategies for the future.
11. The Book on Rental Property Investing (2015)
If you want to make money in real estate, you need to read The Book on Rental Property Investing.
Best-selling author Brandon Turner will teach you the tricks, and help you avoid the pitfalls of becoming a successful real estate investor—in under 400 pages.
Brandon explores four unique strategies you can start implementing today.
As a new or experienced investor, you will learn how to build an achievable plan, find great deals, analyze properties, and more. Brandon includes everything you need to become a real estate millionaire.
Brandon Turner is certainly an authority on real estate investing. As the co-host of the BiggerPockets real estate podcast, and having sold over 350,000 copies of the book.
This makes it one of the best books on real estate investing.
12. Rich Dad Poor Dad (2011)
The book Rich Dad Poor Dad is one of the most influential and best-selling personal finance books of all time—having sold over 32 million copies!
Kiyosaki explores his story of growing up with “two dads”, his real dad, and his best friend's dad and how their values influenced his views on money, investing, and success.
The author believes that the middle class works for money while the rich work to learn. This eye-opening memoir challenges typically household beliefs. Beliefs like: you need to have a high salary to get rich, your house is an asset, and more.
13. Thinking, Fast and Slow (2011)
Author of Thinking, Fast and Slow Daniel Kahneman is a world-famous psychologist and winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics.
Kahneman takes us on a “tour of the mind” and explains the two systems that drive the way we think. He explores everything from biases that affect our stock market investment decisions to planning our next vacation.
Kahneman shows us how to tap into the benefits of slow thinking and offers practical insights into how we make decisions in business and in our personal lives.
“Thinking, Fast and Slow” has topped best-seller lists for years and is essential for any serious investor.
This is one of the best investing books that explores the psychology of investing.
14. How to Make Money in Stocks (Fourth Edition, 2009)
Bill O'Neil wrote How to Make Money in Stocks and founded Investor's Business News Daily in 1984, an American daily newspaper and website covering the stock market, international business, finance, and economics.
O'Neil also created the CAN SLIM system for choosing stocks, where each letter in the acronym represents a key factor to look for in any stock before you buy.
Based on a major study of market winners from 1880 to 2009 and originally published in 1988, this expanded edition gives you:
- Proven techniques for finding winning stocks before they make big price gains
- Tips on picking the best stocks, mutual funds, and ETFs to maximize your gains
- 100 new charts to help you spot today’s most profitable trends
This is a great book for people who want to skip the hows and whys of investing and jump right into to researching and choosing stocks to add to your portfolio.
15. Stocks for the Long Run (Fifth Edition, 2014)
As the title suggests, Wharton Professor Jeremy Siegel advocates for long-term stock market investing.
Siegel draws on more than two centuries of data to explain how equities surpass all other asset classes and why they perform better during inflationary climates.
Originally published in 1994 and now in its fifth edition, published in 2014, the fifth edition of Stocks for the Long Run also answers questions like:
- How did the crisis alter the financial markets and the future of stock returns?
- What are the sources of long-term economic growth?
- How does the Fed really impact investing decisions?
- Should you hedge against currency instability?
The book provides a complete summary of historical trends that will help you build a sound and profitable long-term portfolio.
16. Irrational Exuberance (Third Edition, 2016)
Initially published in March of 2000 and now in its third edition published in 2016, Nobel Prize-winning economist Robert Shiller explains how psychologically driven volatility is an inherent characteristic of all asset markets.
He warned investors of both the tech and housing bubbles and cautions that signs of irrational exuberance among investors have only increased since the 2008–2009 financial crisis.
Earlier editions covered the stock and housing markets and famously predicted their crashes. This edition expands its coverage to include the bond market so that the book now addresses all of the major investment markets.
You will benefit by learning how to diagnose asset bubbles and consequently reduce your risk before the next bubble bursts.
Irrational Exuberance is as relevant to the individual investor today as it was in March of 2000.
Summary of the Best Investing Books of All Time
The 16 best investing books of all time open a treasure chest of wisdom, insights, and strategies to guide both novices and experienced investors. Spanning from Benjamin Graham's value investing principles to John C. Bogle's innovative thoughts on index funds, these books encompass a wide range of investment ideas.
Whether focusing on stocks, real estate, or growing your financial knowledge, these timeless teachings from experts like Warren Buffett, Peter Lynch, and Tony Robbins empower you to shape your investment strategy.
By delving into these essential books, you'll not only elevate your understanding of investments but also make intelligent money decisions that harmonize with your long-term goals.
While it is good to build your own knowledge, I still say the S&P 500 index fund, like iShares' Core S&P 500 ETF, is the way to go. Warren Buffett thinks it's the best way for most people to make money in the stock market, and I agree!