Book Giveaway – Giving Away Another $100 Of Books For Free

Book Giveaway – Giving Away Another $100 Of Books For Free

When I started learning about value investing I had no one to turn to for help or guidance except the infinite internet.  I sifted through thousands of articles, websites, books, videos, and other etc. information to get to where I am today.

Now that I have a solid knowledge base built I’m helping other value investors so they don’t have to struggle as much as I did when starting.

One of the ways I help is by giving away valuable books free to subscribers.  And I detail these book worth more than $100 below.

I’m a huge believe in Charlie Munger’s Mental Models and Worldy Wisdom philosophies that the more we read the more we can know.  And the more we know the closer we are to reaching our goals, making a ton of money, and changing the world.

These books represent knowledge, power, goal and wealth attainment, and much more.  True knowledge is one of the most powerful forces in the world.  But few hold this power…

My goal is to help spread this power to as many as possible.  And next week a lucky subscriber is getting a step closer to their goals by winning the following 10 books valued at more than $100.

Benjamin Franklin by Walter Isaacson

Now on the Recommended Reading and Viewing Page in the Financial History/Regular History section.  I’d give it a 4/5.

This book offered some new things – especially when it came to some of the back room diplomacy Franklin was involved in – that were interesting but not enough to make it a great read.  If I hadn’t studied this time period and Franklin so much this would have gotten a higher rating from me.

Reckless Endangerment: How Outsized Ambition, Greed, and Corruption Led to Economic Armageddon

I’ve not read this book yet.  It’s been in my ever-growing to read pile for a while now though as I’ve heard nothing but great things about the book.

When I came across a cheap copy of the hardcover I had to buy it to give away.

Below is the description of the book from Amazon.

The New York Times’s Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist reveals how the financial meltdown emerged from the toxic interplay of Washington, Wall Street, and corrupt mortgage lenders.

In Reckless Endangerment, Gretchen Morgenson, the star business columnist of The New York Times, exposes how the watchdogs who were supposed to protect the country from financial harm were actually complicit in the actions that finally blew up the American economy.

Drawing on previously untapped sources and building on original research from coauthor Joshua Rosner—who himself raised early warnings with the public and investors, and kept detailed records—Morgenson connects the dots that led to this fiasco.

Morgenson and Rosner draw back the curtain on Fannie Mae, the mortgage-finance giant that grew, with the support of the Clinton administration, through the 1990s, becoming a major opponent of government oversight even as it was benefiting from public subsidies. They expose the role played not only by Fannie Mae executives but also by enablers at Countrywide Financial, Goldman Sachs, the Federal Reserve, HUD, Congress, the FDIC, and the biggest players on Wall Street, to show how greed, aggression, and fear led countless officials to ignore warning signs of an imminent disaster.

Character-rich and definitive in its analysis, this is the one account of the financial crisis you must read.

Profit from the Core: A Return to Growth in Turbulent Times

A great book that talks about competitive advantages.  How to gain them, how to cultivate them, and how not to lose focus on growing them.  This book is on the Recommended Reading and Viewing page in the Competitive Advantage/Competitive Strategy section.  I’d give the book a 5/5.

Messi

This is a great book even if you’re not a soccer or Lionel Messi fan.  The lessons I took from this book were what it takes to become great.  What it takes to stay great.  And the trials you’ll face on your way to greatness.

Now on the Recommended Reading and Viewing page designated as a MUST READ!!! in the Learning/Self-Improvement/Productivity section.  I’d give the book a 5/5.

The Black Swan

I’ve not read this book yet either like some mentioned here.  But I came across a copy of the paperback and had to get it to give away.  Heard nothing but great things about this book as well.

Below is the description of the book from Amazon.

A black swan is an event, positive or negative, that is deemed improbable yet causes massive consequences.

In this groundbreaking and prophetic book, Taleb shows in a playful way that Black Swan events explain almost everything about our world, and yet we—especially the experts—are blind to them. In this second edition, Taleb has added a new essay, On Robustness and Fragility, which offers tools to navigate and exploit a Black Swan world.

Good Strategy Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters

Another great book talking about competitive strategy and competitive advantages.  This book is in the Recommended Reading and Viewing page marked as a MUST READ!!! in the Competitive Advantage/Competitive Strategy section.

The first 1/4 of this book is bland generalities and theory about strategy.  But the last 3/4 of the book are great once it gets to the real world and business case studies.

I give the book a 5/5.

Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln

I’ve not read this book yet either like some mentioned here.  But I came across a copy of the paperback and had to get it to give away.  Heard nothing but great things about this book as well.

Below is the description of the book from Amazon.

Winner of the Lincoln Prize

Acclaimed historian Doris Kearns Goodwin illuminates Lincoln’s political genius in this highly original work, as the one-term congressman and prairie lawyer rises from obscurity to prevail over three gifted rivals of national reputation to become president.

On May 18, 1860, William H. Seward, Salmon P. Chase, Edward Bates, and Abraham Lincoln waited in their hometowns for the results from the Republican National Convention in Chicago. When Lincoln emerged as the victor, his rivals were dismayed and angry.

Throughout the turbulent 1850s, each had energetically sought the presidency as the conflict over slavery was leading inexorably to secession and civil war. That Lincoln succeeded, Goodwin demonstrates, was the result of a character that had been forged by experiences that raised him above his more privileged and accomplished rivals. He won because he possessed an extraordinary ability to put himself in the place of other men, to experience what they were feeling, to understand their motives and desires.

It was this capacity that enabled Lincoln as president to bring his disgruntled opponents together, create the most unusual cabinet in history, and marshal their talents to the task of preserving the Union and winning the war.

We view the long, horrifying struggle from the vantage of the White House as Lincoln copes with incompetent generals, hostile congressmen, and his raucous cabinet. He overcomes these obstacles by winning the respect of his former competitors, and in the case of Seward, finds a loyal and crucial friend to see him through.

This brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincoln’s mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation’s history.

Only The Paranoid Survive

This book is on the Recommended Reading and Viewing page in the Competitive Advantage/Competitive Strategy section.  I give the book a 4/5.

Below is a mini review I wrote of this book in January 2014.

I read Only The Paranoid Survive after it was recommended by Charlie Munger in Poor Charlie’s Almanack and I am glad that I did.

This book is mainly about the decisions Mr. Grove (Former COO, CEO, and chairman of Intel) made, and helped make, to completely reform Intel from a memory company that was suffering a slow death against Japanese competitors to helping it become the worlds biggest semiconductor company.

He walks you step by step on how and why the decisions were made within Intel which in and of itself is fascinating to me.  He also goes through some case studies on decisions that other companies made (and still make) that lead to companies losing market share or possibly even dying altogether.

The case studies and examples specifically from Intel do a great job of showing you examples of how you can spot these trends or potential trends in companies that you are managing or looking to invest in.

Is it as good as Competition Demystified?  In my opinion no, but it is not specifically a book about strategy like CD is.  It is one mans advice, stories, and case studies about decisions he made and helped make that helped start to turn Intel into the powerhouse it is today.  Along with Mr. Munger, I also highly recommend reading this book.

Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us)

I’ve not read this book yet either like some mentioned here.  But I came across a copy of the paperback and had to get it to give away.  Heard nothing but great things about this book as well.

Below is the description of the book from Amazon.

Would you be surprised that road rage can be good for society? Or that most crashes happen on sunny, dry days? That our minds can trick us into thinking the next lane is moving faster? Or that you can gauge a nation’s driving behavior by its levels of corruption? These are only a few of the remarkable dynamics that Tom Vanderbilt explores in this fascinating tour through the mysteries of the road.

Based on exhaustive research and interviews with driving experts and traffic officials around the globe,Traffic gets under the hood of the everyday activity of driving to uncover the surprisingly complex web of physical, psychological, and technical factors that explain how traffic works, why we drive the way we do, and what our driving says about us.  Vanderbilt examines the perceptual limits and cognitive underpinnings that make us worse drivers than we think we are. He demonstrates why plans to protect pedestrians from cars often lead to more accidents. He shows how roundabouts, which can feel dangerous and chaotic, actually make roads safer—and reduce traffic in the bargain. He uncovers who is more likely to honk at whom, and why. He explains why traffic jams form, outlines the unintended consequences of our quest for safety, and even identifies the most common mistake drivers make in parking lots.

The car has long been a central part of American life; whether we see it as a symbol of freedom or a symptom of sprawl, we define ourselves by what and how we drive. As Vanderbilt shows, driving is a provocatively revealing prism for examining how our minds work and the ways in which we interact with one another. Ultimately, Traffic is about more than driving: it’s about human nature. This book will change the way we see ourselves and the world around us. And who knows? It may even make us better drivers.

The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More

This book is on the Recommended Reading and Viewing page in the Competitive Advantage/Competitive Strategy section.  I give the book a 4.5/5.

I read this book so long ago that I don’t remember a lot of the specifics about it.  But the lessons I do remember – the powerful economics of the long tail as one example – stick with me to this day years later.  It’s a powerful book that I recommend.

Since its been so long since I read the book I’ll let the Amazon description tell you more about it.

What happens when the bottlenecks that stand between supply and demand in our culture go away and everything becomes available to everyone?

“The Long Tail” is a powerful new force in our economy: the rise of the niche. As the cost of reaching consumers drops dramatically, our markets are shifting from a one-size-fits-all model of mass appeal to one of unlimited variety for unique tastes. From supermarket shelves to advertising agencies, the ability to offer vast choice is changing everything, and causing us to rethink where our markets lie and how to get to them. Unlimited selection is revealing truths about what consumers want and how they want to get it, from DVDs at Netflix to songs on iTunes to advertising on Google.

However, this is not just a virtue of online marketplaces; it is an example of an entirely new economic model for business, one that is just beginning to show its power. After a century of obsessing over the few products at the head of the demand curve, the new economics of distribution allow us to turn our focus to the many more products in the tail, which collectively can create a new market as big as the one we already know.

The Long Tail is really about the economics of abundance. New efficiencies in distribution, manufacturing, and marketing are essentially resetting the definition of what’s commercially viable across the board. If the 20th century was about hits, the 21st will be equally about niches.

A lucky subscriber will win these 10 books – valued at more than $100 – free next week.  And I will even ship the books at my cost to anyone anywhere in the world.

All you have to do to have a chance to win is subscribe to Value Investing Journey for free.  Or be a Press On Research paid subscriber.  And this isn’t all you’ll get when you subscribe either.

You also gain access to three gifts.  And a 50% discount on a year-long Press On Research subscription.  Where my exclusive stock picks are evaluated and have crushed the market over the last four years.

And you can subscribe to Press On Research for only $49 if you’re a free Value Investing Journey subscriber.

If you have further questions about Press On Research go to its FAQ linked in this sentence or email me at jasonrivera@valueinvestingjourney.com

***

My new investment holding company Rivera Holdings is now open to investors.  There is no minimum required investment.  And you DO NOT have to be an accredited investor to invest.

For more information please go to the Rivera Holdings link above or email me at JasonRivera@valueinvestingjourney.com.

Only The Paranoid Survive Giveaway Update

A couple days ago I wrote a mini review of Only The Paranoid Survive and announced that I was giving away the book.  The book is still available to anyone in the US that wants it but apparently I wasn’t clear about which version of the book it was and for that I apologize.  The book is the paperback version, and not the ebook/Kindle version.  I will send the book for free to anyone in the US and all you still have to do is email me that you want the book, your name, and address and I will send it to you for free.  I have gotten several emails from people overseas asking for me to send the book to them.  I will if you want me too but if you do want it and live overseas you will have to pay for shipping that could range anywhere from $20-$70+ depending on which country you live in.  Frankly it would be a lot cheaper to buy a Kindle version of the book if you live overseas.

Sorry for any confusion I may have caused with my poor description of the book in my previous posting.

Mini Review of Only The Paranoid Survive And Free Book Giveaway!

Mini Review of Only The Paranoid Survive

I read Only The Paranoid Survive after it was recommended by Charlie Munger in Poor Charlie’s Almanack and I am glad that I did.  This book is mainly about the decisions Mr. Grove (Former COO, CEO, and chairman of Intel) made, and helped make, to completely reform Intel from a memory company that was suffering a slow death against Japanese competitors to helping it become the worlds biggest semiconductor company.  He walks you step by step on how and why the decisions were made within Intel which in and of itself is fascinating to me.  He also goes through some case studies on decisions that other companies made (and still make) that lead to companies losing market share or possibly even dying altogether.  The case studies and examples specifically from Intel do a great job of showing you examples of how you can spot these trends or potential trends in companies that you are managing or looking to invest in.

Is it as good as Competition Demystified?  In my opinion no, but it is not specifically a book about strategy like CD is.  It is one mans advice, stories, and case studies about decisions he made and helped make that helped start to turn Intel into the powerhouse it is today.  Along with Mr. Munger, I also highly recommend reading this book.

Free Book Giveaway

If you live in the US and would like to win my copy of this book above please send me an email saying in the subject line and text of the email that you want it.  Also in that email send me your name and mailing address and I will pay to ship the book to you. The first person to email me the above information will get the book completely FREE with no strings attached.

Building Wordly Wisdom, What I’ve Been Doing, And What I Am Doing

What I’ve Been Doing

As you may have noticed over the past several weeks/months I haven’t posted any company analysis articles.  Since finishing up and publishing the book in September I have been back searching for companies to write articles about and potentially to invest in.  Up to this point I have only been able to add companies to my watch list because everything I have found has been either crap or if it has been a company I want to invest in (some even with some substantial competitive advantages) have all been overvalued.  I have searched in countries around the world, on the OTC markets, at higher market caps than I usually look at, spin offs, ADR’s, etc and here are my observations thus far.  The following does not mean that I think the market will crash anytime soon.

  1. Every single company I have found that I want to invest in is overvalued.  Most just marginally but I did find a company in Japan that I estimated to be worth AT BEST $20 a share and it was selling for more than $100 a share.  Companies with some kind of competitve advantages that I have found and want to invest in are overvalued in comparison to the other cigar butt type companies that I will mention next
  2. The cigar butt type companies with high cash, low debt, marginal to poor profitability, no moats that I would invest in if they were undervalued enough have been up to this point generally fairly valued in my opinion.
  3. The companies that I have found to be undervalued enough for me to invest in have all been terrible companies with very low to no cash, high debt, severely declining businesses, unprofitable, Chinese companies, etc that I will likely never touch.
  4. Markets, or at least individual companies, around the world are in my estimation fairly valued or overvalued at least at the micro level.  I have searched in the US, Europe, Asia, and South America for companies to invest in and the companies around the world have all fit into one of the three above categories.  Most in the fairly valued to slightly overvalued range.

As you know if you have read this blog for any amount of time I like to put my money where my mouth is, buy the companies I find to be good investments, and write analysis pieces about them.  I haven’t even found any particularly egregious or interesting companies to write negative articles about either like I did with Wendy’s in 2012, and Koss last year.  The Japanese company I found and alluded to above was a very well run company that I would possibly invest in if it weren’t so overvalued so I didn’t feel a need to write negatively about them.

The reasons above are why I have not been writing more on this blog which I frankly hate to not be able to do but I will not write half-hearted, vague, non quality company analysis articles just to keep the flow of content going.  I also will not write my thoughts on other general investing, the process of investing, and other value investing topics because people like Oddball Stocks, Wexboy, CSInvesting, The Red Corner Blog, and others write much better than I can about those kinds of things.

Building Wordly Wisdom and What I Am Doing

In December I decided that I needed to stop banging my head against the proverbial valuation wall since I have now built up a watch list of around 25 companies.  Far more than I ever would invest in at one time and already far more than I want to keep track of at one time.  For the past two years I have spent nearly 100% of my time either learning about investing or writing the book.  Since December I have decided to spend about 50% of my time searching for companies, adding and discarding companies from my current watch list, so that only the best companies are on there when valuations do become better.  The other 50% of the time I have caught up on some much needed reading that I severely neglected over the last two years while I was building my value investing knowledge, investment processes, and writing the book.

The below has been done in the last three weeks and is an example of what I will continue to do while awaiting a market crash and investment opportunities.

4 books read:

  1. Poor Charlie’s Almanack
  2. Guns, Germs, and Steel
  3. Only The Paranoid Survive
  4. Tulipomania

~500 companies evaluated at at least a minor level, vast majority discarded as only 2% of companies I decided to do further research into.

10 company annual reports and financials read

5 companies valued.

4 companies added to watch list

The above list does not contain anything like articles that I have read on the internet.

In addition to this blog being about company analysis, teaching, and learning about value investing, it is also a bit of a journal so that I can keep track of things that I have done, learned from, and to look back to see where I could have improved.  In that vein I periodically plan to update the list above of things I have done to keep track of where I have been.

Until the market crashes I will be doing the above, as Mr. Munger puts its, building my wordly wisdom, among other things like posting links that I have learned from, and depending on how long it takes for the market to crash go back to learning Mandarin again.   I have a couple ideas in mind of things that I can do to learn and practice in the meantime and will share any of those if they come to fruition. I will also be giving away some of the books I have read and will announce the first giveaway soon.

For now though I am going to get back to my current research list of OTC’s and ADR’s.