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Poor Charlie's Almanack--The Wit and Wisdom of Charles T. Munger, edited by Peter D. Kaufman.    Although the investment genius of Berkshire Hathaway chairman Warren Buffett is widely acknowledged, the wisdom of his business partner, Charlie Munger, is less well known.  Editor Peter Kaufman has brought together--in one large volume--the words and philosophy of this deep thinker and very successful investor.

An insatiable reader of astonishing breadth, Munger believes that to be a successful business owner, investor and human being,  you must bring to the table a multi-disciplinary store of knowledge.  Hence his emphasis on concepts drawn from economics, psychology, biology, physics, chemistry and many other disciplines to address problems in business and life.  Munger often invokes the adage:  To a man with a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.   He adds that "the only antidote to being an absolute klutz due to the presence of a man-with-a-hammer syndrome is to have a full kit of tools."  He recommends building this kit through a lifetime of learning and reading.  Munger says that his children think he's "a book with two legs sticking out" and adds that he has known no wise people "who didn't read all the time--none, zero."

Poor Charlie's Almanack is divided into several broad sections and incorporates informative sidebars along with numerous photos and drawings.  The first section is a biography, which is followed by an overview of the Munger approach to "life, learning, and decision making."  Next is a compilation of unscripted Mungerisms--sound bites that reveal his tell-it-like-it-is acerbic wit and "uncommon" sense.  Finally, Kaufman has included transcripts of ten of Munger's public talks--many of which incorporate those trademark Mungerisms as well.  For example, "All intelligent investing is value investing--acquiring more than you are paying for.  You must value the business in order to value the stock."  Time and again you'll learn--and even chuckle--as you read this impressive book.

 

ISBN: 1578643031

Format: Hardcover, 480 pp.

Pub. Date: April 2005

Publisher: Donning Company Publishers

 

 

"Scholars have for too long debated whether Charlie is the reincarnation of Ben Franklin.  This book should settle the question."

Warren Buffett