By John Drachman
As you pack for summer trips, these books were built to travel with you.
Layered Money: From Gold and Dollars to Bitcoin and Central Bank Digital Currencies leads Amazon’s list of best-selling investment books this summer. Author Nik Bhatia takes readers on a jaunty exploration into the evolution of monetary systems around the globe, tracing parallels between gold’s transition from raw mineral to bank-issued gold certificates and the evolution of digital currencies.
Many companies got their Environmental, Sustainability and Governance (ESG) ball rolling during 2020. For a a glimpse at how well companies handled themselves during COVID, the next two books show how strategic business shifts can actually telegraph a company’s business growth strategy going forward.
- First, if you like the idea of investing well while you are doing good, Judith Rodin’s and Saadia Madsbjerg’s Making Money Moral is a great place to begin – or continue – your own ESG journey. The duo set out to achieve two goals in their book: Find a way to earn above-average returns and reimagine capitalism as a means to unlocking private-sector investments in new ways to solve global problems, from environmental challenges to social issues.
- Second, take a long sip from a cool drink as you examine at what smart companies are doing to attract, retain and train people in Alex Edmans’ Grow the Pie: How Great Companies Deliver Both Purpose and Profit. Since 2020 public companies are required by the SEC to report on their policies regarding human capital. He provides metrics and real-world examples as to how investments in people increase revenue, profits, and cash flow which in turn can lead to lower prices for customers and fairer prices for suppliers – with enough left over to even reward the C-Suite.
Younger beach goers looking for a breather from Lore’s “high-octane tale of power, destiny, love and redemption,” can relax and dream about getting rich with Vanguard’s John Bogle. First published in 2007, his Little Book of Common Sense Investing provides a timeless way to construct relatively low-risk portfolios by focusing first on index funds and asset allocation.
Even through the leisurely days of summer, the stock market has successfully returned about 10% a year for the past 100 years. For an entertaining survey of the ins and outs of Wall Street’s investment vehicles, A Random Walk Down Wall Street by Burton G. Malkiel delivers a solid overview on how the financial markets work and how investors behave – often against their own best interest – with an update for 2021.
The Bottom Line
Before finalizing any investment decisions take a few minutes to get out of the sun. Then, consider reaching out to an investment professional to ask what he or she is reading – and test your assumptions. Investment decisions should last more than one season – and an advisor can help ensure your strategy syncs up with your longer-term goals.
John Drachman is a contributing writer to MyPerfectFinancialAdvisor, the premier matchmaker between investors and advisors. John is an IABC award-winning writer, who applies his 30 years of financial marketing experience toward advancing the dialog between investors and investment professionals.