So how did I, that hapless employee back in 1987, know how to do all that in 2008? What changed? Who am I, and what made such a big difference twenty-one years later — which, of course, is what makes this book so different too.
That’s important to know because, after all, there are hundreds of books and experts out there promising to help you with stock investing. I just read a pretty good one myself recently, written by a popular investment TV personality entitled Getting Back To Even. In normal times, that would be considered a pretty low goal. But these are not normal times.
So just who the heck am I to teach you about stock investing?
Well, I am not a TV personality or a billionaire. I am not a Wall Street insider or giant hedge fund founder. And I am certainly not Warren Buffett — although I refer to him quite often.
I am just like you — somebody who woke up one day and realized if I was going to make money investing, I’d better get on with learning how to do it. So I did just that — and you can see what I learned works pretty well.
Now I’m not saying I’m some miracle worker or that I hit this return every time (although I discuss one much better than that in the book—try 1400% on for size — I tell you that stock name too), or that I always make money when markets are crashing — or that you will too.
And I’m not saying this is some foolproof system that removes all effort and thought from the process — although I have reduced these a great deal for you.
But you see, part of my background virtually assured I would figure this out and reduce the thought and effort down to the bare essentials.
Here’s why. I’ve been a systems man for most of my career, i.e. simplifying processes, and I’ve gained quite a reputation for simplifying, and explaining, complex things.
And I take my research seriously. So, you remember when I said I was just like you, that I realized that to make money investing, I’d better get on with learning how to do it?
Well, when I get my mind set on something, I’m an “all in” kind of guy. So when I finally woke up and realized I had all my eggs in my employer’s stock basket, I started doing some serious investment research. I mean, even on vacation, I would spend days onboard my sailboat, the Saline Solution II, on Key Biscayne, Florida, reading book after book on stocks, commodities, futures, options, and market indexes.
But even that didn’t satisfy me. So I studied many more months, sat for the New York Stock Exchange Series 7 exam and became a Financial Consultant and licensed stockbroker. I had an office in beautiful downtown Coral Gables, Florida where I helped my clients invest their personal money.
Ultimately I left the business, and am no longer licensed or associated with a broker/dealer, because I was offered a computer systems consulting job just too good to turn down. It involved creating computer disaster recovery procedures for hospitals — I told you I’m a systems man — and how appropriate is that—the disaster recovery part, I mean — when you think about the stock market?
So here I am again, an investor just like you. But I think you take my point that I went all in and developed some expertise along the way. I learned how to greatly improve my odds of success,.
And if you’re interested, yours too.