The year was 1999. Everyone "knew" that the sure path to financial independence was to simply buy stocks and hold on for the long run; that a diversified portfolio was one that held a variety of stocks, such as large caps, small caps, and maybe even a few from other countries; that government regulations ensured a safe investing environment; and that commodities and futures trading were a sure path to reduced wealth. I vehemently disagreed and viewed these supposed "truths" to be, in actuality, costly myths. It was in that environment that I resolved to write Jackass Investing.
Over the following decade, I cataloged dozens of investment myths, and over the years researched the basis for each one. In this book I condense that list to 20 of the most pervasive. My purpose is not just to expose each myth, but to show people how they can profit by exploiting the myths. This required an extensive amount of research, both to show why each myth is just that - a myth - and not a fact, and also to create the investment approach that you, the reader, could use to profit from the behavior of those people who believed in - and invested pursuant to - each myth.
As a result, Jackass Investing is really two books in one. The first part is the print (and electronic) book. It contains 300 pages of research and narrative designed to expose each myth. I have written this book to be entertaining as well as informative, and I incorporate numerous comparisons between the myths and popular culture (one of my favorites, and most valuable, is the comparison between George Costanza on Seinfeld and the behavior of most so-called "investors"). The second part is the online "Action Section". It is here that I reveal specific "Trading Strategies" that you can employ to create a "Free Lunch" portfolio. A Free Lunch portfolio produces both greater returns and lower risk than the "conventional" portfolio that is advocated by the vast majority of financial professionals and publications.
My goal, as I state in the Introduction to the book, is "to put to rest the investment paradigm that has been over-preached and accepted without hesitation, despite its obvious flaws, for far too long" and to help my readers "transform their lives and gain what every adult in the modern world dreams of and rarely achieves ... financial security."