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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb investment book for the experienced private investor as well as a great intro for the beginner, 18 Dec. 2013
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This review is from: How to Make a Million - Slowly: My guiding principles from a lifetime of successful investing (Financial Times Series) (Kindle Edition)
I was an avid reader of John Lee's weekly My Portfolio column in the FT for nearly 15 years and I was very upset when the paper discontinued it. This book is a mixture of some very sage investment advice from Lee at the same time as him analysing some of those previous FT columns with the benefit of hindsight and looking where and why he got things right and more importantly, where and why he got things wrong. His style is very self-depreciating and he seems to be absolutely devoid of any ego which I find to be very refreshing in the investment sector.

At a time when the internet gives us private investors access to endless up-to-the-minute information that we could only have dreamt about 20 years ago it's tempting to forget the basic principals of great investing as championed by people like Warren Buffett and John Lee - find a good share at a reasonable price and hold onto it.

Lee's book is a superb reminder to us experienced private investors of what we should always be looking for in building our portfolio at the same time as recognising those warning signs that we have all ignored to our peril in the past and being decisive in deciding when to sell.

I particularly liked the section on family-owned public companies and why these are sometimes such a good investment - there are lots of family pressures from maiden aunts etc to keep the dividends flowing steadily at the same time as the family directors have a sense of duty to future generations to safeguard the family firm and not to make any stupid, rash decisions that could endanger it. I'd always steered clear of them in the past thinking they were all stuck in the dark ages but I will certainly look a little closer now.

At the same time as being a great reminder to the more experienced of us, it is also a wonderfully simple guide for the beginner in how to invest directly in shares as opposed to trusting other people (such as fund managers) to do that for you. Far too many of us (I know because I was one of them) think that direct share investing is too risky and too time consuming but John Lee demonstrates that anyone can do this for themselves with much better returns than the so called professionals.

He explains everything one needs to know in a superbly understandable manner without at any time seeming the least bit patronising. He clearly explains what he believes are the key factors you should take into account and deciphers financial jargon in a very easy manner.

My only criticisms of the print edition of this superb book is that the font is a tad small but the Kindle edition resolves that easily.

It's a great Christmas or birthday present and if someone you love doesn't buy it for you, do yourself a favour and treat yourself.
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