Greed Is Good: The Capitalist Pig Guide to Investing

February 24, 2015 - Comment

Money is important. Money is a catalyst. Money makes things happen.Am I right? What is more powerful than money? Love? Food? Not a chance: With cash in hand, one can simply order out. For both.I grew up in the 1980s, so I take the utmost pride in having lived in what I honestly believe to

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Money is important. Money is a catalyst. Money makes things happen.

Am I right? What is more powerful than money? Love? Food? Not a chance: With cash in hand, one can simply order out. For both.

I grew up in the 1980s, so I take the utmost pride in having lived in what I honestly believe to be the greatest decade of the twentieth century. Why? From the Police to Perestroika, the `80s had it all. It’s obvious that as a generation, most of our feelings about money were formed at a time when Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, Michael Milken, and Yuppie culture reigned supreme.

Enter the `90s–and once again the stock market is booming. Now older, most of us have amassed some cash for the very first time. You want to get in on the action, but haven’t got a clue where to start. More than anything, you are unique–the last thing you need is a middle-aged money manager telling you where to stow your stash.

So here’s the deal: I’m twenty-three years old, obsessed with money and the stock market, a radio talk-show host, and a commodities trader. I’ve made money in everything from mutual funds to stocks–even options and futures. I’ve penned this little…shall we say, manifesto, for those of you out there who want something more out of life then two-for-one night at the Toss `n Sauce. Greed Is Good will tell you everything you need to know about the major financial “products” out there: from mutual funds to money markets, even the sexy stuff like options and futures.

Money is important, but I think this book makes an oftentimes dry subject a mite more palatable. I had to sit through the boring stuff, no reason you should too. Bottom line? This book is a practical but punchy ride through the money maze. And if I found my way out–so can you.Greed, in Jonathan Hoenig’s estimation, is passion. It’s lust. It has nothing to do with single-minded accumulation and everything to do with freedom, with the ability to pursue the things that make you happy. Hoenig received his first real introduction to greed while working at Starbucks as a teenager. He found that the money he earned after buying a few shares of Starbucks stock greatly exceeded what he made as an after-school wage slave. While in college, he started a radio show called Capitalist Pig, which now plays in 18 states. Greed has been good to Hoenig.

In Greed Is Good, he wants to share the wealth with his post-baby-boom generation by preaching the gospel of investing. But investing isn’t just about choosing mutual fund A over mutual fund B. It’s about not spending money on useless stuff, leaving more money for the things that are meaningful. Hoenig understands how frills like designer clothes, CDs, and, yes, Starbucks coffee can seem like necessities, when really they’re lifestyle add-ons that can be eliminated. Doing without such excesses can be painful, but that’s something else Hoenig believes in; not only is greed good, so is discipline, sacrifice, and self-denial. Greed is written in an eclectic style that includes Yiddish phrases, street slang, and generational cultural references (“Whatchu talkin’ ’bout, Willis?”), which serves two purposes: it’s very entertaining to read, and renders the often-dry message of “Save and invest” infinitely more palatable. –Lou Schuler

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Comments

Mark says:

Supercool Introduction to Investing This is one of those books you’re either going to love or hate, due to the author’s very individual, conversational style. Personally I loved it, that’s why I’m writing this and that’s why I gave it 5 stars. It’s a fast-paced introduction to all different types of investing, from fixed-income to stocks to futures. It’s laced with retro-80s references which you’ll be familiar with if you’re in the target 20-35 age group.Despite the whirlwind pace the author has some very good substance to offer. His philosophy of viewing every purchase you make as an investment may come as a shock to some but it is the foundation of good personal finances. He also presents the stock market in a very easy-to-understand way, for the beginner.This is a fun, introductory book, that maybe surprisingly bears re-reading several times (I certainly have). If you’re in the target age group and have just started to think about your money, pick this book up. It makes a sometimes…

D. Olsen says:

Good Book 0

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