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4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 2 December 2007
The main idea of "One up on Wall Street" is to beat the market by choosing a small portfolio of stocks of 3-10 companies that grow at a higher rate than the market average. The book doesn't cover mutual funds, index funds and exchange-traded funds, because the author claims that "if you don't think you can beat the market, then buy a mutual fund and save yourself a lot of extra work and money".

The book encourages you to become an aggressive investor, who has a good understanding of financial markets; is comfortable with taking risks with their investments; is not concerned about short-term volatility (fluctuation in returns); and invests for the longer-term. This encouragement is done in a very friendly tone, it is easy to understand, and quite well explained, with enough humor and variety.

I would also recommend the unabridged audio version in addition to this paperback edition.
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on 14 February 2012
what i liked about lynch's book is that from the out set it's incredibly easy to read. too many investing books are written in such a boring, dry manner one struggles to stay awake while reading them - and more often than not feel guilty because the reader feels they are missing "great advice" when tryiong to decipher the text. not with this little gem.

the book covers how to find companies to invest in, how to value companies, and when to get out of companies invested in - the main theme running through the book is that an amateur investor can and will out perform professionals if they avoid the noise from wall street and focus on companies they understand.

the book gives great example of companies that were a "10 bagger/20 bagger" (meaning if you invested £1 you would have made £10/£20 etc.). lynch also gives example of where he missed companies/lost money as wekll - so the advice is very well rounded.

so why 4 stars? the book is well written with great examples and advice - but i question how relevant this is today when there are software packages and websites that can perform instant ratio checks, and profitability measures etc. - basically meaning that i am unsure whether lynch would have been as successful today as he was when the book was written - late 1980's. other than that, son't be put pff. this is a great book and well worth the read....
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on 19 July 2005
This book has become a classic of personal investment literature for good reasons. For one thing, watching Lynch lampoon Wall Street and its cadre of institutional investors is rich fun. He is, perhaps, the foremost money manager in the U.S., thanks to the success of Fidelity's multibillion-dollar Magellan Fund. Lynch says that when E.F. Hutton speaks, the average investor ought to take a nap. Although this is an updated edition, most of the content dates to "pre-bubble" 1989. As such, it offers haunting warnings about stocks with inflated price-to-earnings ratios. Warning to novice investors: Lynch is a Wharton grad who's been in the market since his college days and, as such, he tends to see stocks as simple and straightforward. Like the "Oracle of Omaha," Warren Buffett, he's a quintessential value investor who looks for undervalued companies in nuts-and-bolts industries. The difference, as Lynch puts it, is that he buys those companies' stocks, while Buffett buys those companies. We strongly recommend this book to those who govern their own portfolios.
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on 1 October 2014
I've just read this book - twice - in the last month, and it is very thought provoking.
Having been written in 1989 (25 years ago) my initial impression was that it needed to be edited to bring it-up-to-date. Then, on a 2nd reading, I thought it's best off as it is. What changed my view was the comments he made on Berkshire Hathaway (Warren Buffetts fund) and that it's "never too late to buy a good share". See page 89 (What Stock Market, chapter 5): the Berkshire Hathaway share price was US$7 in the early 1960's' yet at the time this book was written (1989) it was US$4,900. Was Berkshire Hathaway worth buying at US$4,900? You bet it was! Earlier this year (2014) it touched US$208,000 a share!

This book isn't about analysis of figures and assessing balance sheets - it's about finding companies with the potential to increase their share price multiple times over a relatively short period (say 3 to 15 years).
As Lynch himself writes (see "Reading the Reports, in Chapter 12) you don't need to go on a "wild-goose chase" looking for the numbers to point you in the direction of a share purchase. Barely 2 minutes with an annual report will give you all the info you need. And this info is only providing the icing on the cake.

What this book is about is uncovering potential companies to invest in by using your own experience of life.
It's telling you to open your eyes, look around you and investigate what you find good - be it a new brand of jam on your toast, or a new gadget you've come across that no-one should be without.
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on 26 March 2014
A great part of my life has been dedicated to following the stock market and learning how to invest. The first time I put actual money on the table I went all-in. It took losing a lot of that money to realise that this was a mug's game - at least the way I was doing it. My approach involved scanning the daily movers and shakers, and trading on momentum. Technical analysis... I have yet to come across anyone who actually uses this successfully to generate consistent growth in their portfolio. As I would later discover, none of the greats used it. Who are the greats? Black swans some call them. Yeah those exist I'm sure. But my new hero, Peter Lynch, is no black swan. At least his approach isn't. Ever hear the mantra: "Invest in what you know"? This is Lynch. He coined that phrase.

One Up on Wall Street by Peter Lynch may look like it was born in the 80s. And along with Mr. Lynch's fantastic suit on the cover, its title may draw a few laughs. But the principles you will take from it are timeless and of great value.

Read this book if you have limited knowledge on investing; read it if you consider yourself to be pretty well read on the topic; read it if you have no clue. It is applicable to all levels. And for all those looking to get a job in this industry, it will set you up well for answering that very popular interview question: "If I gave you £100,000 where would you invest it and why?". This book will embed in you sound investing principles, which you will lean on throughout your life and/or your career. And Lynch is a great writer to boot. He cuts straight to the point and doesn't dance around the subject only to keep you chasing the plot - every succinct chapter is a standalone lesson in itself.

Aspects of the book that made the greatest impact on me:

* Value-investing in nut-and-bolt industries;
* How to categorise companies and analyse them (slow growers, stalwarts, fast growers, turnarounds, asset plays and cyclicals);
* How to phone up a company and what questions to ask (no, really);
* The best time to buy and sell;
* How to confront financial statements and what key data to look for;
* Why futures and options are for farmers and not investors;
* And of course, what the title of the book itself is alluding to, how working on Wall Street can put you at a disadvantage to the individual investor.

What this book won't tell you:

* What companies to invest in and when (what book could do that?);
* Quantitative analysis (boooring);
* How to get rich quick (go away).

Reading this book added a good few levels to my confidence and really helped affirm my understanding of what I previously knew about but hadn't really fully grasped. Lynch accomplishes this with his down-to-earth writing style - love his wit - and an arsenal of real world examples he uses to illustrate his points. A must-have for any collection.
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on 26 January 2004
Peter Lynch has all the qualities you'd want from an investor and he's not bad as a writer either. He talks at great length about the qualatative aspects of investing including portfolio balance, spotting winners and when to buy and sell and I use ideas of his in my own portfolio. I'd advise reading other books that relate more to numerical aspects of selecting shares, "Beyond the Zulu principle" being one of the best, as he is a little light in this area. Never the less, this book is a good investment for anyone who wants to or already does deal in shares.
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on 2 November 2007
I have been reading a few books about the stock market lately. So far, it is the book that has inspired me most.

I have noticed that most of the truly big winners in the stock market are long-term investors, which indeed challenges my desire to make a quick money in the stock market. I have tried to adjust my attitude toward stock market thanks to the inspiration given by the books I read recently, especially "One Up on Wall Street". To be specific, I found Part II of the book, Picking Winners, is very useful to me. It gave me an opportunity to review the tactics I have used so far.

I think that this book should be useful to you as well, as long as you want to stay in the stock market with a long-term view.
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on 27 September 2015
Lots of people will recommend Intelligent Investor: The Definitive Book on Value Investing - A Book of Practical Counsel as the best investing book out there (Warren Buffet included) but in my opinion this trumps it. Peter Lynch's down to earth approach to investing is very clearly explained and keeps it all very interesting which is no mean feat - investing is a very dry subject.

I particularly like the sections where he details some of his investments (good and bad) and includes the charts explaining where he bought and sold and the reasoning behind that. Peter actually goes quite in depth on some of his biggest mistakes which is a really nice touch and takes it away from being overly preachy like a lot of other investment books.

So far I've read it twice and I fully intend to read it again.
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on 11 March 2016
Great book, very insightful, seems to hark back to a time when banking was not strangled by regulation. Down to earth sensible principles and sound grounded advice. Great writing style.recommended for all fledging investors. Only issue I have with the book is it was stamped from a library in Illinois - seems as though I've purchased an unreturned library book!
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on 27 January 1998
This is by far the best of the fabled mutual fund manager, Peter Lynch, books. This book is the best of the lot, and well worth the price of admission.
Mr. Lynch managed the largest mutual fund in the WORLD for a number of years (Fidelity Magellan: 1977-1990), and brings his experience and suggestions home in a common-sense sort of way. Not filled with numbers, but provides the investor with the basics of where to look around for good companies, and some hallmarks of them.
I suggest that this book belongs on the shelf of any beginning investor (or broker or CFA for that matter), together with Buffettology. The only weak part of this book is the valuation portion: that is, to know how you are buying $1 worth of stock for $1 or less (here Buffettology would help).
Overall, I highly recommend this book, and believe both novice and experienced investors will profit alike.
Jay Walker
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