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How to Make a Million ??? Slowly: My guiding principles from a lifetime of successful investing (Financial Times Series) by [Lee, John]
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How to Make a Million ??? Slowly: My guiding principles from a lifetime of successful investing (Financial Times Series) Kindle Edition

3.7 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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Length: 180 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Description


"I cannot think of a better way of reinforcing that key message that long-term investing can prove utterly rewarding. Certainly, mother is getting a copy."


Jeff Prestridge - Mail on Sunday



"There is some very sound advice, I like Lee's common sense approach...


It's the book for people who are prepared to build their portfolio steadily, one stock at a time and work on the principle that you're buying for the long term...


Lee is rightly proud of what he has achieved but also honest about the fact that he has made mistakes, usually either because he sold a stock too soon or because he simply misjudged. Either way he's adamant that if you make a loss you should learn the lesson and move on."



From the Back Cover

‘John is a hero to many private investors in the UK. By tucking money away year after year, and choosing his investments wisely, he has accumulated a portfolio worth more than £1 million.’

The Motley Fool


‘I’m a big fan of the writings of John Lee. John Lee moves the market.’



‘Lord (John) Lee of Trafford was one of the first UK investors to build an ISA portfolio worth more than £1 million, reaching that landmark in 2003.’

Daily Telegraph, March 2012  


John Lee is one of the UK’s most successful private investors. Beginning with an investment pot of £125,000 in the early 1980s, by 2003 he had turned this into a thriving portfolio of over £1 million, and it has significantly increased in value since then. Using efficient investment methods, as well as pursuing a winning ‘buy and hold’ strategy, he was the UK’s first ISA millionaire.


In How to Make a Million – Slowly, John Lee offers invaluable lessons that will help you make the right decisions about your investments. Explaining why an unhurried portfolio is the best and most sustainable strategy for growth, you will learn how to spot opportunities, research and monitor the market, work with management and above all, make money.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 2694 KB
  • Print Length: 180 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1292005084
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: FT Publishing International; 1 edition (27 Nov. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00H83R154
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #60,027 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
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.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Like many, I have read Lord Lees FT columns. (But have only been an reader over the last few years.) I was looking forward to his book and was not disappointed.

It was great to read some of his old articles and to realise that he has been invested in some companies for years, stretching into decades.

The value of the book lay in seeing his logic in investing in these companies. And how he had followed them/and been invested in them ever since. He brought home the importance of really knowing the companies he invested in. And highlighted the tricks of the trade. Nothing he said was rocket science but then investing is not rocket science. Its about knowing a business, picking up information and applying judgement. That is what this book brought home.

What was particularly interesting was his emphasis on family owned companies. That is something that is simply ignored by the mainstream. He explained clearly the rationale for investing in these companies.

In addition, he did not shy away from his investing mistakes. This is refreshing

If you are at all interested in UK small cap investing, I cant think why you wouldnt buy this book. This is a must-have addition to the investing bookshelf.
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Format: Hardcover
Like many investment books, it gives you hints as to how the author managed to achieve his investment success without giving you specific instructions you can follow. But he does explain many of his guiding principles. For example he is keen on those that are fundamentally cheap (i.e. on low p/e's, with high dividend yields and strong asset backing).

In addition he is keen on those which are dominated by families where the directors might have a strong "proprietary" interest from their large shareholding, and where other family members holding shares rely on the dividends.

He also frequently visits the management of the companies in which he invests and commonly attends AGMs to get an impression of the directors. As I have said repeatedly in the past, it is surprising what you can learn from attending General Meetings and it is a pity more shareholders do not do so.

Of course the author has had one advantage in gaining access to companies in that he was a regular writer for the Financial Times for 14 years. Like many readers, I was an avid reader of his column because he often mentioned unknown and unloved companies where value appeared to be present. Several of his articles in the FT are reproduced in this book to give some historical perspective. Needless to say this can't have done his own portfolio containing those companies much harm.

It's an educational book in another sense in that it covers some of his past mistakes - he now apparently takes a much tougher stance on "stop-losses" which he typically sets at 20%. He also avoids racy start-ups, biotech and exploration stocks.
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Format: Hardcover
This is the accumulated wisdom of a man who made a million (plus!!!) by investing in ISAs, using his own money. He explains his principles, which have some parallels with Warren Buffet - intrinsic value (in Lee's case P/E and yield are important); management you trust (he goes to lots of AGMs) ; long termism (with stop loss in case of errors of judgement); and a willingness to confess that he doesn't walk on water (at least, not all the time). What's particularly noticeable is that he doesn't just follow well-trod paths like most investment funds, he's looking for growth, which is more likely to come from smaller UK companies (and which he can monitor) I always was a fan of John Lee's. My New Year's Resolution is to walk the walk (with my own money) rather than just talk the talk.
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