If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you should have a sense that I’m worried about the direction of our economy, as well as the world economy. I’m not a complete pessimist, though. If you’re willing and able to put work into protecting the capital you’ve accumulated, you should be able to whether the coming economic storm.
To do that, though, you’re going to need a lot more than a stock brokerage account. You’re going to need to get educated about what’s going on behind the scenes in the business world and at the Fed. Here are 10 new investment books that should help you do that:
1) Aftershock: Protect Yourself and Profit in the Next Global Financial Meltdown.
The new and updated second edition to Aftershock, the authors have expanded the book with forecasts for 2012 as well as an in-depth break-down of the current economy. They focus heavily on inflation, which they predict will rise to 10 percent in two to three years.
2) (**Preorder Only**) The Great Crash Ahead: Strategies for a World Turned Upside Down.
Famed financial newsletter writer Harry S. Dent, Jr. argues that we’re due for another major economic meltdown sometime between 2012 and 2014. Dent has a contrarian view arguing that deflation, not inflation, will capsize us next. His reasoning? Aging baby boomers are going to start cashing in their chips. That fact coupled with staggering public and private debt will cause the economy to cave in on itself.
3) George Lindsay and the Art of Technical Analysis: Trading Systems of a Market Master.
Perhaps one of the most gifted financial prognosticators ever born, George Lindsay’s techniques live on through the newsletters he left behind. Ed Carlson takes Linday’s ideas and translates them into visual charts and easy-to-understand language so you can start using technical analysis on your own before you buy and sell stocks.
4) The Era of Uncertainty: Global Investment Strategies for Inflation, Deflation, and the Middle Ground.
For the first time in years, the macro-economic picture is going to out-weigh picking individual stocks. It’s not just a question of a where a particular company’s headed, it’s a question of how the global financial system is re-shaping itself. The authors delve into several different scenarios for how the economic mess will play out in the years to come.
5) Understanding China’s Economic Indicators: Translating the Data into Investment Opportunities.
We all know about CPI, jobless claims, inflation rates and unemployment in the U.S., but increasingly, it’s China’s economy that’s setting the tone for the rest of the world. This book looks at 35 key economic indicators that can give us clues about where the economy in the People’s Republic is heading. And it comes from a reputable source: Tom Orlik, a China correspondent for The Wall Street Journal.
6) Trading Tools and Tactics.
Fundamental analysis is a great way to destroy your portfolio, according to technical trader Greg Capra. Here, he lays out the insights behind all those mystifying terms you’ve never really understood: candlesticks, shooting the gap, retracements and more. It’s a book designed for daytraders, not the buy-and-hold crowd.
7) The End of Growth: Adapting to Our New Economic Reality.
You can give up on the idea that our economy is going to recover. According to Richard Heinberg, this period of high unemployment, falling home prices and stagnant or negative growth is the new normal. We could only forestall the energy, economic, environmental and social problems plaguing us for so long. It’s time now for us to start looking at ways to fix them.
8) Extreme Money: Masters of the Universe and the Cult of Risk.
A cutting look at how the global financial system really works. Satyajit Das draws on 30 years of experience in high finance giving us a look at the housing crisis came about, how hedge funds make money and how a handful of banks and insiders control the bulk of the cash in the largest economy in the world.
9) (**Kindle Book**) Rupert Murdoch, The Master Mogul of Fleet Street: 20 Tales from the Pages of Vanity Fair.
Let’s just forget that he bought MySpace. It’s hard to argue that Rupert Murdoch isn’t a financial genius (just take a look at this gigantic Wikipeda page that lists all of News Corporation’s holdings). Still, there’s always been the sense that Murdoch’s a wolf in sheep’s clothing (and the current phone hacking scandal just drives the last nail in the coffin). This Kindle book takes a fine-toothed comb over Murdoch’s career through a series of Vanity Fair articles.
10) Endgame: The End of the Debt Supercycle and How It Changes Everything.According to Endgame’s authors, we’re at the end of a six-decade debt binge, and now we’re due to pay the piper. That means debt restructuring and austerity measures are probably on their way in the U.S. and throughout Europe. Our entire economy, tax structure, benefits system and personal habits are due to change – whether we want them to or not.
1) Steve Jobs: A Biography.
OK. This isn’t actually a book on investing, but I’m stoked to read it anyway. No matter how often we complain about Apple products, it’s hard to deny Steve Jobs is a genius. He turned Apple into a household word in the 1990s, left to reinvigorate Pixar, then returned to the crumbled corporate husk that was Apple and repositioned it as a money-minting machine with the iPod, iPhone and iPad. Brilliant.
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