With all the recent financial markets turmoil, I haven't done a book review in a while and felt that it was time to do one. I recently had an opportunity to peruse an e-book called The Investment Compass by Terry Atzen.
Mr. Atzen has had a long and distinguished career in the investment business. He spent 13 years at Merrill Lynch, 6 years at Bateman Eichler, 4 years at EF Hutton, 6 years at Prudential, and the last 9 years at his own investment consulting firm - Atzen & Associates.
The book's goal is to empower what I would call the average "buy and hope" investor who is still terrified of the stock market because of the steep decline of the past 18 months or so. The book attempts to offer a "guidance system" for these type of investors.
Like an actual compass, the Investment Compass also uses four points of reference. These points are the markets which the author considers to be the key global financial markets - the US stock market, the US bond market, the oil market and the gold market.
I do agree with the author that these are the key global markets to watch. I would also add that one should also keep an eye on foreign stock markets - in the future, they may be more important than the US stock market.
When I look at financial markets, I like to look at what are called fundamentals - what are interest rates, what will affect the US Dollar,etc. However, I will take a look at charts just to see where prices are on a historical basis.
Mr. Atzen's emphasis in his book is on what is called technical analysis which, using charts, looks at statistics such as price, price changes and volume of trading. Many people do base their investment decisions solely on the basis of technical analysis.
In the Investment Compass, Mr. Atzen uses one of the simplest charts in technical analysis - the Point and Figure Chart in analyzing his four key financial markets. Mr. Atzen explains clearly and consisely what a point and figure chart is and how to use it in analyzing the markets.
Even novice investors should be able to learn from the author about this type of charting. I myself learned some valuable things about using point and figure charting. To his credit, Mr. Atzen states that his book is NOT a day-trading system. He says that the book is about "when to invest" and "when not to invest".
The Investment Compass e-book can be ordered for FREE at - www.theinvestingcompass.com website. People who purchase the book can also receive updates from Mr. Atzen on the 1st and 15th of each month for a fee of $10 per month or $100 per year.