The best stock trading books

5 authors have picked their favorite books about stock trading and why they recommend each book.

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The Logical Trader

By Mark B. Fisher,

Book cover of The Logical Trader

Mark Fisher was a landmark on NYMEX, the owner of its largest clearing operation. A veteran intraday trader, he explains his own trading method. It is a valuable look at how a floor trading and professional extracts short-term profits from the market. There are few professionals that share their methods.


Who am I?

As an aerospace mathematician, I transitioned into the futures markets and became fascinated by the ability to participate in “price discovery,” and to get instant gratification from a good trade. You are not dependent on anyone else. I then decided that the stock market offered another exciting venue. Once you learn to control risk and be patient, success will follow. All that from sitting at my desk.


I wrote...

Learn To Trade: Trade To Win With A Rule-Based Method

By Perry J. Kaufman,

Book cover of Learn To Trade: Trade To Win With A Rule-Based Method

What is my book about?

Learn To Trade will step you through chart reading, moving averages, breakouts, risk control, and portfolios – everything you need to be a successful trader. It will give you rules to follow, rules that make the difference between uncertainty and confidence.

While this book is intended for the serious beginner, all traders will benefit from the review and the added inside by renowned trader and analyst Perry Kaufman.

Encyclopedia of Chart Patterns

By Thomas N. Bulkowski,

Book cover of Encyclopedia of Chart Patterns

We sometimes think patterns like a double top or a triangle are old-fashioned and not useful, but Bulkowksi not only demonstrates but proves otherwise. He set the standard for how technical analysis should be presented—with hard facts about how a pattern is identified, how well it works on specific securities over time, its gain/loss ratio, and other data. And he provides updates on his website. Bulkowski has also done simillar work on swing trading and candlesticks. I like Bulkowski’s work because he uses the scientific approach of forming a hypothesis, testing and re-testing it, and honestly reporting whether a hypothesis is valid (or to what extent it can be trusted).


Who am I?

Economics isn't really a good starting point for financial market analysis for the simple reason that its models are wildly inaccurate. As behaviorial economists like Daniel Kahneman have been showing, irrationality and the inability to measure risk properly are a very big component of the investment and trading decisions. But statistical risk management is also sloppy when applied to human behavior because people are not objects that reliably behave the same way under similar circumstances. So when you read an economist about markets or an engineer about risk management, you're missing a lot of the story. In the end, technical analysis is fascinating because how and why humans behave is an enduring mystery.


I wrote...

Technical Analysis For Dummies

By Barbara Rockefeller,

Book cover of Technical Analysis For Dummies

What is my book about?

Technical Analysis for Dummies covers the universe of techniques that help traders make gains and avoid losses. These techniques are based mostly on arithmetic but which ones you choose and how you use them makes a big difference in winning or losing. You can design a winning system to get an advantage—and still go broke if you hang on too long (greed) or get out too early (fear). 

In order to trade well, you need to review all the technical methods. Here’s the blessing and the curse—every single technique works. Selecting the techniques that are a fit for your personality and lifestyle is a lot harder. You may think you know yourself going in, but chances are you will be surprised at what fits you best.

A Random Walk Down Wall Street

By Burton G. Malkiel,

Book cover of A Random Walk Down Wall Street: The Time-Tested Strategy for Successful Investing

This is the classic book that tells us we can’t beat the market, and explains why. That hasn’t stopped me from trying, of course (did I mention “human nature” up above?).  Even Malkiel hedged somewhat—look at Warren Buffett, look at a handful of other famed investors who’ve consistently beaten the market—describing himself as “a random walker with a crutch.” I.e., the market is largely efficient, just not entirely so.  


Who am I?

My dad gave me $5 when I turned five, $6 when I turned six... and, well, the rest is history. (Of the most minor sort.) I was treasurer of my high school class each year; treasurer of the Democratic Party for 18; and lucked into launching the first widely used personal finance software at more or less the dawn of personal computers. Money. What can I tell you? I like the stuff.


I wrote...

The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need

By Andrew Tobias,

Book cover of The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need

What is my book about?

“Lives up to its brash title.”Los Angeles Times 

“This is the only investment book I have read that truly made sense.”  — Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban

How to Make Money in Stocks

By William O'Neil,

Book cover of How to Make Money in Stocks: A Winning System in Good Times and Bad

This is the book that started it all for me. O’Neil not only lays down what fundamentals to look for in growth stocks, he also shows readers when to buy and when to sell. The first 100 pages show charts with buy points in some of the biggest winners of all time. This is a book to be studied and studied over and over again.


Who am I?

The stock market has been a passion of mine for over 15 years. These books have helped me learn how to spot trends and manage my risk while trading in stocks and cryptocurrencies through bull and bear markets. 


I wrote...

Swing Into It: A Simple System For Trading Pullbacks to the 50-Day Moving Average

By T. Livingston,

Book cover of Swing Into It: A Simple System For Trading Pullbacks to the 50-Day Moving Average

What is my book about?

Packed with over thirty-five charts, Swing Into It: A Simple System For Trading Pullbacks to the 50-Day Moving Average, lays out an easy-to-follow yet effective strategy for successful swing trading. Detailing the technical indicators and money management strategies that have worked best for him, T. Livingston breaks down what every savvy trader needs to profit in today’s stock market. Topics discussed include how to analyze the general market, which stocks to trade, when to buy, position-sizing, profit targets, and selling rules.

Swing Into It provides a variety of different examples so that the reader will be prepared for various market scenarios. Detailed sample trades are included so that the reader can see how Livingston thinks throughout each phase of his trades. If you’re looking to get started in swing trading or seeking to refine your trading system, Swing Into It belongs in your library.

Trade Your Way to Financial Freedom

By Van Tharp,

Book cover of Trade Your Way to Financial Freedom

Good trading does not always involve just buying and selling decisions. If it was, trading would be much easier! To be a successful trader, you must have your psychological “house” in order. And that is what this book is superb for. Trade Your Way To Financial Freedom assists you in navigating the turbulent mental, emotional and psychological waters all traders face.


Who am I?

I have been trading for over 30 years now, and I was lucky to be one of the part-time “hobby” traders to be successful enough to trade full time. Along the way, I was a 3-time trophy winner in the world’s premier real time, real money futures trading contest. My passion is trading, both for my personal accounts and in assisting my students with their trading. While I always say “trading is the hardest way to make easy money” this field is my lifelong passion.


I wrote...

Entry and Exit Confessions of a Champion Trader: 52 Ways A Professional Speculator Gets In And Out Of The Stock, Futures And Forex Markets

By Kevin J. Davey,

Book cover of Entry and Exit Confessions of a Champion Trader: 52 Ways A Professional Speculator Gets In And Out Of The Stock, Futures And Forex Markets

What is my book about?

Are you looking for trading entry and exit ideas for your trading strategies? If so, this book is just what you need. This informative guide includes 41 entry ideas, 11 exit ideas, and code in Tradestation format and plain English for each (NinjaTrader 7 and 8 code available in the complimentary Book Bonuses described in the book).

Each entry and exit has been used in actual strategies by Champion trader Kevin J. Davey. Also included are detailed steps for how best to incorporate these entries and exits into your own trading. Start building strategies today with these fully described entries and exits!

Encyclopedia of Candlestick Charts

By Thomas N. Bulkowski,

Book cover of Encyclopedia of Candlestick Charts

This book explains every candlestick pattern you can think of, and more. The best part is that Bulkowski has tested each pattern and summarized the results. He puts the best patterns at the front of the book, so you do not need to read everything to find what you are really looking for. I use it as a reference quite often.


Who am I?

As an aerospace mathematician, I transitioned into the futures markets and became fascinated by the ability to participate in “price discovery,” and to get instant gratification from a good trade. You are not dependent on anyone else. I then decided that the stock market offered another exciting venue. Once you learn to control risk and be patient, success will follow. All that from sitting at my desk.


I wrote...

Learn To Trade: Trade To Win With A Rule-Based Method

By Perry J. Kaufman,

Book cover of Learn To Trade: Trade To Win With A Rule-Based Method

What is my book about?

Learn To Trade will step you through chart reading, moving averages, breakouts, risk control, and portfolios – everything you need to be a successful trader. It will give you rules to follow, rules that make the difference between uncertainty and confidence.

While this book is intended for the serious beginner, all traders will benefit from the review and the added inside by renowned trader and analyst Perry Kaufman.

Trades about to Happen

By David H. Weis,

Book cover of Trades about to Happen: A Modern Adaptation of the Wyckoff Method

In his book, David Weis explains the principles of the Wyckoff method from a more modern approach, adapted to today's markets.

Using simple but very powerful concepts (supports and resistance, Springs and Upthrust, effort vs. result), he gives us the necessary ideas to build our own winning trading system.

David also created his own indicator (Weis Wave), which is a great contribution to the trading community.


Who am I?

I am Rubén Villahermosa, independent trader and author. My logical and rational mind led me to question the why of market movements, which allowed me to learn the principles of the Wyckoff method. I have deepened in the study of the interaction between supply and demand through high-level Technical Analysis tools such as Wyckoff, VSA, Price Action, Volume Profile, and Order Flow; knowledge that I share through my books from principles of honesty, transparency, and responsibility.


I wrote...

The Wyckoff Methodology in Depth

By Rubén Villahermosa,

Book cover of The Wyckoff Methodology in Depth

What is my book about?

Are you tired of losing money in the stock market? Have you tried countless trading methods and none of them work? Get rid of everything that didn't work for you and learn a professional approach: The Wyckoff Method.

Ruben Villahermosa, Amazon bestseller and independent trader, has refined and improved some of the most powerful concepts of stock market trading and makes them available to you in this book so that you too can benefit.

Trading Price Action Trends

By Al Brooks,

Book cover of Trading Price Action Trends: Technical Analysis of Price Charts Bar by Bar for the Serious Trader

Al Brooks is the most influential author on the pure study of price action. His trilogy is the bible for understanding the messages conveyed by individual candlesticks and price behavior as a whole.

The book teaches us how the market moves and provides clear ideas for taking advantage of different contexts: trends, ranges, and reversals.


Who am I?

I am Rubén Villahermosa, independent trader and author. My logical and rational mind led me to question the why of market movements, which allowed me to learn the principles of the Wyckoff method. I have deepened in the study of the interaction between supply and demand through high-level Technical Analysis tools such as Wyckoff, VSA, Price Action, Volume Profile, and Order Flow; knowledge that I share through my books from principles of honesty, transparency, and responsibility.


I wrote...

The Wyckoff Methodology in Depth

By Rubén Villahermosa,

Book cover of The Wyckoff Methodology in Depth

What is my book about?

Are you tired of losing money in the stock market? Have you tried countless trading methods and none of them work? Get rid of everything that didn't work for you and learn a professional approach: The Wyckoff Method.

Ruben Villahermosa, Amazon bestseller and independent trader, has refined and improved some of the most powerful concepts of stock market trading and makes them available to you in this book so that you too can benefit.

You Can Be a Stock Market Genius

By Joel Greenblatt,

Book cover of You Can Be a Stock Market Genius: Uncover the Secret Hiding Places of Stock Market Profits

The book outlines an array of “special situations” that may offer very profitable opportunities, i.e. bankruptcies, restructurings, merger securities, and spinoffs, among others. Greenblatt underscores the importance of a set of basic ‘rules’ when delving into the universe of special situations: do your own work, don’t trust anyone, pick your spot and assess the downside, not the upside. The basic premise of the book is that it pays off to search for areas where there is a high probability of finding undervalued equities. You can make a lot of money sticking to the tried-and-true method of investing in and holding good companies for many years. However, if you are a more experienced investor looking for other areas to invest part of your portfolio in, this book will give you several new places to explore.


Who am I?

I am the Founder of Stellar Wealth Partners, a SEBI-registered Research Analyst firm and small case manager for investors in the Indian stock market. I am the author of the international best-seller on value investing, The Joys of Compounding. Once a strong foundation is created for a business, owners don’t work for money. Rather, money works for them. As an investor, your money is working for you 24/7. You are becoming wealthier with each passing second, alongside the increasing intrinsic value of your businesses. An investor builds earnings power through a business ownership mindset. 


I wrote...

The Joys of Compounding: The Passionate Pursuit of Lifelong Learning

By Gautam Baid,

Book cover of The Joys of Compounding: The Passionate Pursuit of Lifelong Learning

What is my book about?

Value investing is not just a system for success in the market. It's also an intellectual toolkit for achieving a deeper understanding of the world. In The Joys of Compounding, Gautam Baid builds a holistic approach to value investing and philosophy from his wide-ranging reading, combining practical approaches, self-cultivation, and business wisdom. Baid integrates the strategies and wisdom of preeminent figures whose teachings have stood the test of time. Drawing on the work of investing greats like Warren Buffett, Charlie Munger, and Ben Graham, as well as philosophers and scholars, he artfully interweaves the lessons learned from his many teachers. Baid demonstrates their practical applications in the areas of business, investing, and decision making and also shows that these ideas can be applied to one’s own life with just as much reward.

Where Are the Customers' Yachts? Or a Good Hard Look at Wall Street

By Fred Schwed,

Book cover of Where Are the Customers' Yachts? Or a Good Hard Look at Wall Street

This book is over 60 years old but so relevant today! The headline involves a brokerage firm customer looking at all the yachts owned by stockbrokers, hence the question in the title. A well-known writer friend of mine put it another way: “The broker made money, his investment firm made money, and two out of three ain’t bad.” I love this book that zeroes in on the conflict brokers have between their own interests and the interests of their clients.


Who am I?

I’ve been a professional investment advisor for over 50 years and it took me that long to figure out the best way for individuals to retire with a decent size multi-million dollar fortune. The books I recommend speak to this topic from some fascinating and different points of view. But why did it take so long? I don’t know. I suppose the obvious answers aren’t so obvious at first, especially in a business as complex as the securities industry. But I think I finally figured it out and the solution is so elegantly simple. My professional life’s work!


I wrote...

The Pure Equity Plus Plan: Your Path to a Multi-Million Dollar Retirement

By Peter J. Tanous,

Book cover of The Pure Equity Plus Plan: Your Path to a Multi-Million Dollar Retirement

What is my book about?

After working on Wall Street and in the stock market for over 50 years, I finally found the closest thing to a surefire, history-tested way to retire with a fortune in the stock market. And the formula I explain in the book is blessedly simple! I’m not the only one. Warren Buffett has been advocating a similar approach for even more than 50 years, but is anybody listening? Now is the time!

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