The following are a selection of quotes and my thoughts on the investment classic, Reminiscences of a Stock Operator. The book, written by Edwin Lefèvre and published in 1923, is thinly disguised biography of Jesse Livermore, a legendary speculator. Although written nearly a century years ago, this book remains a must read for serious students of the market. Over the years, I’ve been asked many times how one could break into the hedge fund industry, and I always point them to this book due to the timeless insights it offers into the art of speculation. I recommend readers read between the lines rather than take everything literally or as gospel. For example, the greatest unstated lesson of the book is the importance of risk control so to build a sustainable trading practice. Though the book ended on a high note, it was plain as day that, without robust risk management, Jesse Livermore would end up broke once again. In fact he did: Livermore went broke in the 1930’s and committed suicide in 1940 at the age of 63 — truly a tragedy that could be avoided. Nevertheless, this book offers invaluable insights to all serious market participants.
First A Dream by Jim Clayton
“I read your book over the weekend and enjoyed it very much… Give me a Call.” — Warren Buffett’s voicemail to Jim Clayton. In Berkshire’s 2003 annual letter, Buffett credited the book for triggering his acquisition of Clayton Homes.