A common denominator that can be found among the world’s wealthiest and most successful persons is that they attribute many of their accomplishments to constantly investing in their knowledge base. Approximately eight hours of Warren Buffett’s day is spent reading. That equates to more than 500 pages each day, or just under 3,000 hours of reading a year. Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft Corp. (MSFT), is also an avid reader who reads one book a week.
In “The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari,” Robin Sharma explains that “investing in yourself is the best investment you will ever make. It will not only improve your life, but it will also improve the lives of all those around you.”
Reading books about finance and investing is a great way for Millennials to effectively invest their time and pocket money into becoming better investors. Books can be great mentors as they allow for wisdom to be easily accessible at any time of day and virtually anywhere. Below are five books that can help millennials become better investors.
"Alwaleed: Businessman, Billionaire, Prince," by Riz Kahn (2005)
According to Forbes, Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Alsaud is the world's 34th richest man. In "Alwaleed: Businessman, Billionaire, Prince" Riz Khan, a prominent British journalist, documents the life of the man who is often referred to as the Arabian Warren Buffett. Despite being a member of Saudi Arabia's Royal Family, Prince Alwaleed is considered a self-made man. The biography shares the story of how the Prince built an investment holding company worth $85 billion from scratch. The book also gives insight into his unique approach to investing.
"Rich Dad’s Cashflow Quadrant," by Robert Kiyosaki (2011)
There is no doubt that Robert Kiyosaki is one of America's most sought-after finance experts. His New York Times bestseller, "Rich Dad Poor Dad" taught millions of readers a number of things. In "Cashflow Quadrant," Robert briefly outlines the basic principles shared in his first book "Rich Dad Poor Dad" and expands on those concepts by explaining the advantages and disadvantages of the four possible ways people can make money: by being an employee, self-employed, business owner and an investor.
"Warren Buffett Invests Like a Girl," by The Motley Fool (2011)
The number one takeaway from The Motley Fool's "Warren Buffett Invests Like a Girl" is that an investor's temperament can either be a great asset or a huge liability. It is quite obvious that Buffett's temperament, which the books describe as extremely feminine, is a great asset. The easy-to-read book compares the characteristics of female investors to male investors and points out that, like Buffett, investors should take a feminine approach to investing.
"Warren Buffett’s 3 Favorite Books," by Preston George Pysh (2012)
Warren Buffett's investment philosophy was greatly influenced by Benjamin Graham's "The Intelligent Investor" and "Security Analysis" in addition to "The Wealth of Nations" by Adam Smith. These three books are great resources for investors, but they can be a bit complex for beginners. Preston Pysh realized this and simplified the primary concepts shared in each of those books into one easily digestible text called "Warren Buffett's 3 Favorite Books."
"Berkshire Hathaway Letters to Shareholders," by Max Olson (2014)
Every year the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world of investing, Warren Buffett, writes a letter containing timeless wisdom and insights into his mind to the shareholders of his multi-billion dollar conglomerate, Berkshire Hathaway. These letters have been compiled by Max Olson into a book called "Berkshire Hathaway Letters to Shareholders" and allows readers to see how Buffett and his investments have evolved over the last forty-nine years.
The Bottom Line
Although experience and knowledge come as a result of making many mistakes, investors should try to learn from the mistakes that others have made in the world of finance and investing as much as possible. This can save investors a lot of time and prevent large monetary losses. Reading books is a great way to learn about the lives, philosophies and strategies of successful investors.