Zack on Abnormal Returns TV

Tadas at Abnormal Returns had me on last week for a conversation about all the crazy things I do. From my book, Tradestreaming, to the ebook I published to help financial people get books published, to my free download on how to grow a financial services business like Ken Fisher did. We talked a lot about the state of the art in investing and industry trends.

He’s really got game.  You can watch the interview below. Of if you don’t see it, click here.

Best selling business/investment books November 2010

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Dethroning the King: The Hostile Takeover of Anheuser-Busch, an American Icon, Julie MacIntosh

For those following hedge fund manager Whitney Tilson’s moves, you’ll remember he took a long position in $BUD.  This book, written by an FT journalist, describes how InBev took over one of the most iconic American brands, Budweiser.

This book is a great story about a contested corporate take over, reads like a good mystery and is ultimately a somewhat sad tale about globalization engulfing a core product from a foregone era in America.

Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers, Osterwalder and Pigneur

This book is a lot of fun compiling the views of over 400 leading consultants and companies — the result is a handbook for visionaries.

It’s a handy book for startups trying to create viable business models as well as for entrenched companies looking for new markets and revenue streams for their products.  Really chock-full of ideas within a powerful framework that serves as building blocks for all biz models.

It’s Your Ship: Management Techniques from the Best Damn Ship in the Navy, Capt D. Michael Abrashoff

Oh yeah, what a great window into the brain/life/experience of the captain of the USS Benfold.  This is the story of a man who realized success would come from being a better leader, not manager, and shows how he struggled to communicate his message, build trust, and focus on results.

It’s really an autobiography of the growth of a leader and that’s fine with me.  I like the way Abrashoff rolls and it’s a useful case study for corporate and entrepreneurial types.

Debunkery: Learn It, Do It, and Profit from It-Seeing Through Wall Street’s Money-Killing Myths, Ken Fisher

Ken Fisher is a machine, one of the most successful Investment Advisors, managing over $30B.  He seems to pump out a book a year at this point and I have to say, they’re alright.

Debunkery is about unearthing truths, overturning common but widespread market untruths, myths and misperceptions about investing.

Just short of recommending loaded mutual funds, Fisher wants investors to be cognizant of the behavioral biases that they have that make them subpar investors.

The Art of Choosing, Sheena Iyengar

Prominent social psychologist Iyengar begins her unique book by telling the story of a man who survived for 76 days stranded alone in the middle of the ocean.  Like Life of Pi (but real).

Well researched, this book is strong in its cross-cultural analysis into the differences in decision making.  The book somewhat lacks enough take-away value at times but provides a broad overview into much of the author’s research and teachings.

There are a ton of real life examples used in the book and like Ariely or Thaler, the book does a good job describing the excitement of cutting-edge experimentation into behavioral economics and the mind.

What is Tradestreaming: Screening 2.0

Top investment gurus like Benjamin Graham, Warren Buffett, Peter Lynch, and Joel Greenblatt didn’t only help investors enjoy huge market-beating returns in their funds.  They also left behind the keys to the (investing) castle: the methodologies they applied in their market-trouncing performance.  They’ve written books, complete with formulas and strategies, that propelled them to the top of their games and gains.  Tradestreaming aims to recreate these strategies as we pave our own way to outperformance.

Because a small number of expert investors wrote extensively about their investing techniques, we can now create complicated computer programs to reenact their strategies and apply them to today’s stock markets.  Screening 2.0 is all about using smart technology to bring history’s best investors back to life.

Technology-driven investing

Stock screens have been around for decades.  Using screens, we can filter through thousands of investment candidates on the prowl for the ideal investment.  Old screens merely searched databases of stocks using specific criteria (i.e. all large cap stocks with a p/e less than 20 and a growth rate over 7%). Unfortunately, for most investors, these screens fail — searching for specific stocks tells us nothing about the success of such a strategy.

Screening 2.0, lead by analysis and money management firm, Validea, allows us to recreate history’s best investment strategies, computerize them, and then look for stocks that guru investors like Ken Fisher and Marty Zweig would have purchased themselves.  Screening 2.0 is the marriage of search technologies and artificial intelligence with quantitative investing.

More Resources

Make sure you check out the Tradestreaming for the Internet’s best stock screening resources.

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