A reading club with a view to the future

540 Benjamin Graham: The Intelligent Investor

Benjamin Graham’s classic guide to value investing emphasizes the importance of disciplined analysis, patience, and long-term investment strategies.



"The Intelligent Investor" by Benjamin Graham is a timeless investment guide that focuses on value investing principles. Graham emphasizes the importance of rational decision-making, fundamental analysis, and a long-term perspective in the pursuit of successful investing. He advocates for the concept of a margin of safety, which involves purchasing stocks at prices below their intrinsic value to protect against market volatility. The book offers practical advice on stock selection, portfolio management, and risk mitigation, making it a valuable resource for both novice and experienced investors.


  1. Title: The Intelligent Investor 
  2. Author: Benjamin Graham 
  3. Publishing Year: 1949 
  4. Publisher: Harper Business 
  5. Length in Hours: 17 hrs and 48 mins


5 main ideas

  1. Value Investing: The book introduces the concept of value investing, which involves analyzing stocks to determine their intrinsic value and buying them when they are undervalued.
  2. Margin of Safety: Graham emphasizes the importance of buying stocks at prices significantly below their intrinsic value to protect against unforeseen market fluctuations and potential losses.
  3. Rational Analysis: The intelligent investor should base investment decisions on objective analysis of financial statements, company fundamentals, and market trends rather than emotional reactions or speculative behavior.
  4. Long-Term Perspective: Graham stresses the importance of a patient and long-term investment approach, focusing on the fundamentals of a company rather than short-term market fluctuations.
  5. Risk Management: The book provides strategies for managing risk, including diversification, asset allocation, and maintaining a balanced portfolio to minimize the impact of individual stock or market downturns.

5 funny quotes

  1. "The best way to measure your investing success is not by whether you're beating the market but by whether you've put in place a financial plan and a behavioral discipline that are likely to get you where you want to go."
  2. "In the world of securities, courage becomes the supreme virtue after adequate knowledge and a tested judgment are at hand."
  3. "Individuals who cannot master their emotions are ill-suited to profit from the investment process."
  4. "Investing is most intelligent when it is most businesslike."
  5. "If you have good stocks and you really know them, you'll make money if you're patient, and if you're impatient, you won't make money. It's as simple as that."

5 thought-provoking quotes​

  1. "The intelligent investor is a realist who sells to optimists and buys from pessimists."
  2. "The stock market is filled with individuals who know the price of everything, but the value of nothing."
  3. "An investment operation is one which, upon thorough analysis, promises safety of principal and an adequate return. Operations not meeting these requirements are speculative."
  4. "In the short run, the market is a voting machine but in the long run, it is a weighing machine."
  5. "The investor's chief problem—and even his worst enemy—is likely to be himself."

5 dilemmas

  1. Balancing the desire for high returns with the need for risk management and preservation of capital.
  2. Deciding whether to follow market trends and momentum or stick to a disciplined value investing strategy.
  3. Evaluating the balance between investing in individual stocks versus diversifying across different asset classes and investment vehicles.
  4. Navigating the challenge of emotional biases and herd mentality in making investment decisions.
  5. Determining the appropriate time horizon for investments and resisting the temptation to engage in short-term speculation.

5 examples

  1. General Electric - The book discusses the rise and fall of General Electric as an example of the importance of thorough analysis and understanding a company's financial health.
  2. Coca-Cola - Benjamin Graham mentions Coca-Cola as an example of a successful company with enduring brand value and a history of consistent performance.
  3. IBM - The book highlights IBM's transformation and revival under the leadership of Lou Gerstner, illustrating the importance of management and adaptability.
  4. Ford Motor Company - Benjamin Graham analyzes the financial statements and valuation of Ford Motor Company as a case study in the book.
  5. John D. Rockefeller - The book references the influence and success of John D. Rockefeller, the American business magnate and philanthropist, to illustrate the power of long-term investing and disciplined analysis.

Referenced books

  1. The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith
  2. Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits by Philip Fisher
  3. The Theory of Investment Value by John Burr Williams
  4. The Battle for Investment Survival by Gerald M. Loeb
  5. Security Analysis by Benjamin Graham and David Dodd

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"Individuals who cannot master their emotions are ill-suited to profit from the investment process."

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