Thinking about writing a book on the pitfalls of stock market investing - how many of you would be interested ?

papertiger's picture
Rank: Orangutan | 355

So I'm thinking about writing a book on the dangers of investing in stocks in general and what to watch out for.

Over the years I've seen so much phoniness and shadiness .
a) cooking the books
b) Company Secretaries lying and giving overly optimistic info/press releases that prop up share prices
c) over-valuation of assets
d) what to watch out for in different industries - for E&P - liability risk if a drilling rig leaks, in Pharma - USFDA audits
d) auditors lying and sleeping with the management - from PwC to no named companies
e) insider trading
f) How past success and cash flows don't mean jack - one wrong debt fueled venture can sink the ship
g) how real world events affect unexpected financial events in the company - a flood can destory a factory and the company can under-play its seriouness

So on so forth. Most investment books are very theoretical and pertain to understanding financial statements.

But I've come to realize that what happens in the physical world and sphere of company's operations is as important.
I have enough info to write a book, literally. I always accumulate learnings in an excel sheet so what do you guys think ?

Comments (14)

Oct 1, 2017

Sounds dry. I'm not sure that average Joe (who may fall for said pitfalls) is going to want to read this, even though he may need to. A little marketing and relatable narrative or two? I think it would be useful but its a matter of getting it into the hands of people who would benefit from the information.

"The only thing I know is that I know nothing, and i am no quite sure that i know that." Socrates

Best Response
Oct 1, 2017

No interest.

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Oct 1, 2017

Everything you mentioned is covered in the FP&A book in the CFA Level I curriculum, which was written by people way fucking smarter than you. Finish school and get a job so you can have some perspective on how difficult it is to add value to society.

Oct 1, 2017
Kassad:

Everything you mentioned is covered in the FP&A book in the CFA Level I curriculum, which was written by people way fucking smarter than you. Finish school and get a job so you can have some perspective on how difficult it is to add value to society.

Nope not all - cooking the books yes I think that's covered. I wrote that exam. I would know since I own the curriculum books.

What's not covered:
Nowhere in the book do they explain the risks of investing in an oil and gas E&P company.
Nowhere in the book do they tell you about the risks of USFDA audits on the stock price of a pharma company.

Oh by the way - the CFA curriculum writers are way beneath me and my foresight level and prediction level. In fact, I should be teaching them.

The fact that stock prices slide so dramatically is proof that nobody is heeding glaring warning signals . Otherwise - why did Equifax's stock slide. Did the holy CFA Charterholder Harvard MBA at Susquehanna, JP Morgan Asset Management not know how serious a data breach can be for a tech company ?

Equifax's recent breach is a shining example. How BP's Deepwater Horizon event brought its stock to a roll-coaster like fall is another example. The only reason they fall is because they didn't see it coming.

Me, I'm a wise guy. I look at a mining company like Barrick Gold with a mine in Africa and I go - no way - one export ban by some crazy Minister or one nationalization can decimate the price.

Lastly, I'm intending to write for a layman. The average joe doesn't give a damn about the CFA Curriculum nor is he interested enough. Someone who works as a truck driver speculating on some mutual fund probably needs to know how risky it is to have a commodity oriented mutual fund during a political crisis between Iran, Qatar, and Saudi.

Oct 1, 2017

Well gee willikers, maybe banks should hire someone to look at companies at this level of detail. Maybe call it something like equity research. Maybe that truck driver might want to hire someone too - actually, we might need a whole new profession for this kind of small-scale investment risk management to capitalize on the inefficiency created by the small-net-worth clients who could use information like that. Maybe we can call it wealth management.

Christ dude, how did your "foresight level" and "prediction level" get so high in so little time? Just a few days ago your icon was green, you were in school, and you were here to learn! Now, even the lowly folk behind the CFA exam are beneath you. For fuck's sake man, tell us the secret. The rest of us are here grinding it out on trading desks or an analyst pool - we need someone to write a book about these minute details that nobody is covering.

/s

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Oct 1, 2017

If you write about the SEC and it's secret SEX DUNGEONS for stock brokers, I would totally read it. Otherwise, meh.

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Oct 1, 2017

No one cares. It's called people just want to get rich.

Oct 1, 2017

So am I the only fool spending bucks on investment related books like Ashwath Damodaran ? Nobody else buys books ?

Oct 1, 2017

You certainly are not. However, Damodaran is incredibly good at what he does. You are on WSO. Given how many posts about SEX DUNGEONS we get, I for one am a lot more inclined to buy Damodaran's opinion than that of anyone on this site.

Not that SEX DUNGEONS aren't deserving of more coverage.

Oct 2, 2017

What qualifications do you have that would warrant reading your opinions?

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Oct 2, 2017

What on earth happened to this forum??

Oct 3, 2017

Look man, I'm never going to tell someone not to pursue something if they're set on it...but your chances of success are low unless you have some very specific experience that you can write about and make interesting for the average reader. If you have that, go for it in your free time, see what people think of it. Like others have said, getting solid work experience in the industry would really be the best move, most likely.

"When you stop striving for perfection, you might as well be dead."