Learn to Earn: A Beginner's Guide to the Basics of Investing and Business by Peter Lynch
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Let's talk about some late night reading.
Just before bed I happened to stumble upon a free audio book of Lynch's "Learn to Earn: A Beginner's Guide to the Basics of Investing and Business." I knew this was a book that I had to read, so I was more then willing to stay up all night to listen to the audio book. Peter Lynch's most renown book is "One Up On Wall Street," a book that is still coveted and placed upon my top TBR finance list. After reading "Learn to Earn," it is clear that I need to invest my time and hard earned money on other works by Lynch. The author writes in layman's terms, simple for the everyday man or woman to understand. The target market for "Learn to Earn," is young folks, specifically those in their late teens or twenties. He breaks down the complicated world of economics, explaining the jargon so that people can better understand the system. Lynch states the different avenues of investments, and more importantly stresses the importance of learning about the business that you would like to invest in. Therefore, here are the top four key themes of this book:
1) Invest early. As soon as you are of legal age, now is the time to set aside some money and invest it into the stock market.
2) Place most of your money into stocks. You can place it in mutual funds/bonds, but if you want the biggest return for your money it is better to make a much riskier move and dabble in the stock market.
3) Anyone can learn the stock market! The goal of Lynch's novel is to make it accessible for all. He even points out different ways to trade in stocks without the use of a broker.
4) Put America first! A great emphasis on American citizens reinvesting in the companies that were built and remain in the United States of America. Lynch liked to trump up big businesses like Coco Cola, Nike, Microsoft, and other popular fast food joints.
I was leaning towards a 3.5 to 4 stars because of the nauseating effect of American nationalism penetrating the pages. I know Americans like to state that they are "THE GREATEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD," and Lynch is just one of many to proclaim it. All in all, it was a bit off putting for a Canadian, but perhaps it is because of the differences in our culture. I appreciated the historical background when it comes to Wall Street and the early settlement of banks. Personally, history lessons are always a joy to read, but could we take out the highly nationalist views that completely ignore the people that were settled there first (i.e. Indigenous people) or the people that helped make production more effective for the early settlers (i.e. black slaves)? The complete omission of the "other people" was hard to stomach when Lynch went through the history of Capitalism and its laws during the early formation of the United States of America. Sorry for being the Debbie Downer, but that is simply my own point of view. Anyways, this book is a good read for those that know very little about trading and how to read the stock charts. The author breaks it down into terms that are easy to understand. If I ever I have children, it will be a recommended read in their mid-teens or whenever they are old enough to legally buy and trade their stocks.
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