I get a kick out of this.  Try finding a book (any book) on finance that makes this claim:

Statistically speaking, the odds are that you can pick actively managed mutual funds and create a portfolio that will beat—after all fees and taxable expenses—a diversified basket of stock and bond index funds.  Or, if you can’t do it yourself, the odds are that you will find someone who can.

OK—you’d think you could find the above claim somewhere, right?  

But after reading more than 300 finance/investment books, I have never seen a book (or an academic study) state this claim.  In fact, the exact opposite is true–consistently.  … read more 

Yet advisors and salespeople try telling you that it’s easy to beat the results of a bunch of indexes.  They’ll come up with all kinds of excuses suggesting that you should invest with them.  But no studies can be found to support their claims. Shame on “advisors” for putting the odds of success against you!!

Burton Malkiel and Charles Ellis have teamed up to create a nifty little book, The Elements of Investing.    These Ivy League professors have been shouting out their message for years along with their peers, including a string of academic Nobel prize-winning laureates who suggest that the products sold by most financial planners are definitely not the way to go.

This book is great for a first-time finance reader.  There’s a bit of terminology in the foreword that might catch a few people off guard, but if you can get your head around a few of the sticky terms, it should be relatively easy reading.

There are some financially educated people who read this blog, and if you’re picking up this finance book with the hopes of understanding it, perhaps they can help.

If you have a question pertaining to anything in this little book, please put your question in the comment section provided.  I (or one of my other readers) will be glad to help.  And others, who see our questions and answers, will be able to learn from the thread.

I hope you get a chance to read the book–and learn from it.