I trolled the comments section of my list of top ten money books and the Canadian Money Forum thread on Favorite Personal Finance Books and came away with a list of ten of your favorite books that didn’t make the original cut (note that links in the post are affiliate links):

  1. The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason. This classic published as a series of pamphlets in 1920s was the overwhelming favorite as the top personal finance book and you took me to task for leaving it out. A modern English version of the book is now available. Or you can download in PDF format from Preet’s website.
  2. Your Money or Your Life by Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin. The investment advice (putting the entire portfolio in fixed income) might be seriously out to lunch but the book’s key message of rethinking our spendthrift ways struck a chord with many of you.
  3. The Automatic Millionaire by David Bach. You can fit David Bach’s message in two sentences but you felt that anyone who motivates his readers to clean up their financial lives deserves a spot on the list.
  4. The Pension Puzzle by Bruce Cohen. I haven’t read this book, in fact, I hadn’t even heard about it until you mentioned it. The subtitle explains what the book is all about: a “complete guide to government benefits, RRSPs and employer plans”.
  5. The Naked Investor by John Reynolds. In my review, I noted that the author delivers a scathing criticism of the investment industry in Canada for being more interested in lining its pockets at the expense of its fiduciary responsibility towards its clients.
  6. Triumph of the Optimists by Elroy Dimson, Paul Marsh and Mike Staunton is a definitive work on stock, bond and bill returns from 1900 to 2000 for sixteen countries around the world. The book is lavishly illustrated with graphs and is the product of laborious research. The only negative is the price of the tome, which at $112 is a tad too expensive. But I refer to this book all the time and one of these days, I am going to break down and spring for my own copy.
  7. Winning the Loser’s Game by Charles Ellis. Mr. Ellis likens investing to a game of tennis — the winning player is the one who makes the fewest mistakes. The book shows you how to avoid those expensive mistakes.
  8. The Future for Investors. Jeremy Siegel contends that investors are doomed to sub-par returns by consistently overpaying for growth — whether hot stocks or the fastest growing economies whereas history suggests that the companies in slow-growth or shrinking sectors have delivered the best returns for investors.
  9. All About Asset Allocation. Richard Ferri’s tome on divvying up a portfolio is on my reading list and was highly recommended by Canadian Financial DIY.
  10. KPMG Tax Planning for You and Your Family. I’m surprised that a dry book on a rather dry subject made the cut but I suppose a spot must be reserved for a book on helping you with one of two sure things in life.

This article has 8 comments

  1. Well, one of my faves is in here – Your Money Or Your Life. The others I’m not so sure about… Richest Man in Babylon I found a bit hokey. Kind of surprised the Wealthy Barber’s not in here, it usually comes up. Or Benjamin Graham or Peter Lynch….

  2. Hi CC.

    I have the KPMG tax planning book. Yes, it’s dry, but that’s exactly what I like about it. It cuts straight to the chase and tells you what you need to know. Kind of like a dictionary or an encyclopedia.

    If you like to have lots of prose and anecdotes, I like Tim Cestnick’s book, the Tax Freedom Zone. Which is curiously absent from your list. Oh well.

  3. Thanks for the link CC. Richest Man in Babylon has sold over 2 million print copies. It may seem basic to some, but that ensures that it appeals to a wider audience. Great book for beginners especially.

  4. Canadian Capitalist

    Money Energy: These books are the ones not in my original top ten list referred above.

    Phil: I didn’t want to make room for two tax books. And I haven’t read Tax Freedom Zone.

  5. Hmm more books to read.. I would bookmark this lit for later “use”


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