Any recommendations for books on investing?

I have wanted to dabble for a decade or two but have neither found the time or plucked up the courage to do so.

I’ve reached an age where I’m starting to think now or never, and suddenly see retirement as inevitable within a few years not a distant event.

So just wondering if anyone has found any good beginners books relating to the markets - searches often turn up ones with good reviews until someone says they’re too US centric or does that not matter these days?

Not looking to do anything fancy or talking huge sums, just developing a small portfolio.

There’s lots of free stuff on-line and I would start by reading anything and everything, not getting too technical and after a while when some of the jargon starts to stick you should start to recognise common themes, similar to the hifi mantras of ‘source first’, ‘balanced system’ and so on. The Times and FT have lots of good coverage and their regular commentators provide a suitably sceptical counterbalance to the investing web-sites and platforms.

I started off with a subscription to Investors Chronicle which was useful at the outset but with hindsight tries to do too much and in its individual coverage of results doen’t have the resources to dig too deep.

Given that the UK market is regarded as being one of the better regulated markets there’s still enormous scope for presenting a company’s accounts in a favourable light let alone stepping over the line of financial truth. The regulatory authorities are very slow moving and in the rare event of prosecution, penalties aren’t much of a deterrent and the money is long gone.

The market will welcome you with open arms because they are likely to gain at your expense so you should only invest what you can afford to lose.

That said I’m sure you will find it fascinating to see how money works behind the scenes but the odds are heavily stacked against you. I’ve been mostly lucky so far.


The Motley Fool is a good place to start. It’s an excellent organization for stock recommendations, and buy/sell trigger … both in and out. Check them out online. I think they are $99 a year. Well worth it.
And if you decide to get right into it. most serious investment advisors have read The Intelligent Investor, by Benjamin Graham.
Please don’t be put off investing in the market by the uninformed/inexperienced, nervous types (most people). The only real mistake you can make in trading the Stock Market, is not being in it, in the first place.
Learn to control your emotions. Buy, when everyone else is selling … and sell when everyone else is buying. But the Motley Fool will teach you those things.
Begin with small amounts while you learn some things. ($500-1000).


If I were you, I’d Google the subject on how or what to invest in and go from there. Some very rough and basic tips; avoid shares/stocks completely at the start. Get yourself a good platform (not the cheapest). Do not get emotional (the best tip). Don’t borrow to invest. Take profits and wait. When you think you’d like to invest, play with numbers and not real money for 3-4 months (there’s no immediate rush) and finally don’t take advice from forums (except from me).


No no no … from me! …

Seriously tho, only ever buy stocks from solid companies. Ones with lots of cash reserves, and a good track record. But like I said, get your info, recommendations, and investing tips, from experienced online places like The Motley Fool. Maybe read their book first. Lots to learn.
And like Count.d said, Paper Trading is a good form of testing what you think you know. Just keep accurate notes on a spreadsheet of what you have fake invested, and imagine it as real money. Don’t cheat.
Best of luck, and remove the word ‘hope’ from your vocabulary, that’s an inexperienced investors worst emotion.

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Luck is a big part of it, isa tracker is the closest I would go but as a pensioner I would not now risk investment , even though market always rises over time too little time for me left to re coup losses, imho.


There’s this wonderful book on investing, all you have to do is persuade lots of other people that it’s a wonderful book on investing and they need to buy it… :rofl:


All you need to know is bitcoin. Google it.

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I know a little about bitcoin but would need to know a lot more.

I sem to recall you’ve posted about it previously, strikes me potentially as something I may have left too late.

Thanks all for the posts so far.

I guess apart from david1111’s book suggestion it seems that most either have knowledge from experience or feel that there are plenty of resources out there online.

Not looking for a ‘plan’ so to speak just wondered if there were recommended texts explaining how the systems work/terminology etc from a UK perspective. I found an Economist title on Audible but it was several years old, and things like the pandemic may well have caused ripples that can not be updated in print/audiobooks as often as online articles can.

You could do worse that reading the financial pages of the daily’s/Sunday’s, take the FT occasionally radio 4/podcasts. you may be able to access briefings from sector market analysts, they specialise in discrete sections of the market(obvs !). In distant past I did an MBA, I still consider myself a numpty re markets, emh, beta :joy:.


Good thoughts - I rarely buy newspapers but ought to take advantage of the free newspaper offer at Waitrose when I shop there now and then.

I would agree with this sentiment, there is a big difference between investing and speculating. If you want to sleep peacefully at night, it’s best to invest in companies with a proven track record. If you hope to get lucky and don’t mind a lot of potential stress, speculation either in volatile stock or crypto might be your thing. I personally value my sanity enough to never invest in stocks or crypto for speculative purposes…


True gilts/blue chip may be less volatile, also consider if you’re looking for growth or dividends

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No book suggestions, but don’t buy individual stocks to start with - they are risky.

I would suggest investment trusts where a manager curates a portfolio of 50 - 150 individual stocks to reduce the risk of one going belly up.

They are also a safer bet than unit trusts, as exemplified by the Woodford scandal a couple of years ago.


This is what i have done as well, i have divided between 3 green investment trusts (wind/solar/eco etc) with different risk factors. Low risk averages around 3-4% yearly growth, medium around 5-6%, high around 8-9%, based on 10-year results. All three provide yearly dividends.

High risk is then still very relative compared to buying individual stocks, it mainly means that in certain years growth may be 5% and in other years it may be 15%. It’s extremely unlikely to go belly up, in the worst case scenario where it would, the market would likely collapse so broadly that normal savings accounts and pensions would also tumble. So the risk is not much greater than with traditional savings.


Too true, I would also include share save schemes offered by employers to employees, I have seen colleagues lose a lot, even in large companies I have worked for, Ericsson and EDF energy. Rule number one, don’t put all your eggs in in one basket.


Good point, I guess both, it would be nice to be able to supplement retirement income when the time comes as well as having something to dip into if needed.

For a beginner I’d recommend Mutual Funds. They are much less volatile. If you really want to buy individual stocks limiting yourself to the UK is silly. We live in a global economy. Good Luck.

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In my experience the only problem is this low/medium/high risk assumption. It would be great if we could sit back with our big lump sum and decide whether we comfortably want 3% or 9% growth, but it doesn’t work like that. When the markets get hammered, everything gets cut by 25%-40%, but the ‘good’ investments come out strong, whilst the weak do nothing. This includes bonds, gilts, etc.

In the most simplest terms for someone wanting to invest, whatever you choose, I would advise splitting your money into these world sectors and go from there.

North America
Asia (excl Jap)
Emerging Markets
UK (incl Europe)

If you start with 20% in each, the whole world would have to collapse for you to suffer badly. I would also advise a good managed fund, not a tracker and ignore charges (up to a point).

The past two months is a good example of staying calm. Don’t panic, add more money and look to the future.