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The Aggressive Conservative Investor

3.75  ·  Rating Details ·  256 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews
"The Aggressive Conservative Investor will never go out of date. Regulation, disclosure, and other things may change, but the general approach and mindset to successful investing are timeless. Read this book and you will learn the rudiments of 'safe and cheap' investing. An essential read for every amateur and professional investor."
--Stan Garstka, Deputy Dean & Profe
Paperback, 426 pages
Published October 1st 2005 by John Wiley & Sons (first published 1979)
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Nov 30, 2010 Matthew rated it liked it
Not the most readable text, but quite consistently thought provoking. The authors challenge a few tenets of the Graham-Dodd value investing approach -- such as the assumption that companies are going concerns -- and also distance themselves from the Berkshire Buffett's ROIC approach which depends a lot on control of the target company. At the very least it is more intelligent than any of Lynch's rather awful books. What I like is how Whitman and Shubik approach the topic almost as philosophers - ...more
Terry Koressel
Jul 10, 2014 Terry Koressel rated it it was ok
The Aggressive Conservative Investor focuses exclusively on value investing....specifically in distressed securities, which is a different approach than Warren Buffet's value strategy. The authors, writing in the 1970's, take an analytical approach to value and also assesses value as if you were a controlling owner. The approach is sound and the fundamentals are well-defined. The authors are undoubtedly intelligent....highly intelligent actually. However, the book is dry....a tough read. I alway ...more
Nguyen Trung
Feb 11, 2017 Nguyen Trung rated it really liked it
Good. Lots of practical info knowledge but can be a bit dry.
Gabriel Pinkus
Marty's a smart guy, maybe a little too smart for his own good.

Valid criticisms of GAAP and an interesting reflection that Graham & Dodd last published Security Analysis before the "disclosure revolution" as Marty calls it... He's totally right about that. Even reading about how difficult is was to get information back then (pay $10 to get a paper annual report, are you serious?!?), and then that apparently was a lot better than Graham & Dodd days is an interesting point - I'm not 100% s
Brian Zheng
Mar 03, 2012 Brian Zheng rated it it was amazing
A masterpiece and opened a whole new way for value investing. One of the authors, Martin Whitman recently retired from his Third Avenue fund after working as portfolio manager for more than 20 years. His result is definitely impressive, his mutual fund with no leverage achieved annualized return of 11.88% vs 9.26% for S&P 500 from 1990 to end of Feb 2012. His main investment philosophy consists of investing like a control investor instead of passive investor, performing in-depth bottom up re ...more
Jonathan Perez
Dec 06, 2014 Jonathan Perez rated it liked it
I heard about Martin Whitman in my previous readings on Value Investing. This video on wealthtrack here and others triggered my curiosity to learn more. Indeed the principles of value investing appear clearly here. The emphasis is put on long term holding, the power of compounded interests, healthy balance sheets, management's integrity and a focus on the notes section of the financial statements. Just a couple of drawbacks though. First, as other reviews have said before me, the writing style i ...more
Steve Bradshaw
Nov 20, 2011 Steve Bradshaw rated it liked it
Shelves: investment
A dry but generally on-base defense of value investing. The 4 tenets say it all!

1. Strong financial position
2. Reasonably honest management
3. Reasonably transparent disclosure
4. Price below reasonably estimate of fair value

Nothing new or earth-shattering but a sensible approach to investing, complete with case studies, that would do a lot of people a lot of good if they could follow it.
Jul 22, 2011 Sam rated it liked it
A good book for someone who already has a value investing style or is interested in fundamental analysis. Subtle analysis of what constitutes appropriate investments for various types of investors, EPS versus book value, insider vs. outsider conflict of interest, etc.
M.R. Raghu
Feb 03, 2016 M.R. Raghu rated it it was ok
This is truly an investment classic. Though it was published in 1979, it sounds so meaningful even today. Very practical approach to understanding the investment climate and challenges. Must read!
Jun 16, 2014 Jay rated it it was amazing
Great book...will need to go through it again to understand all of it, though, because I'm new to a lot of the accounting stuff. The investing & corporate finance part was extraordinarily accessible.
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