Summary of A Random Walk Down Wall Street

The Time-Tested Strategy for Successful Investing

W.W. Norton,
First Edition: 1958 more...

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A Random Walk Down Wall Street book summary
When you wander Wall Street, watch out for stray theories and useless predictors. Protect yourself with a nice index.


9 Overall

10 Applicability

9 Innovation

8 Style


The first edition of Burton Malkiel’s A Random Walk Down Wall Street appeared in 1973, a few years after the twentieth century’s first big computer technology bubble, the go-go era, popped. This, the newest and eighth edition, appears after the popping of the bubble, the last of the twentieth century’s great computer technology bubbles. Investors burned in the first bubble could have been excused; after all, they didn’t have Malkiel’s book. But it’s astounding how avidly Internet speculators threw aside all that Malkiel and others had taught them. This book belongs on every investor’s bookshelf, and ought to be consulted, or at least touched to the forehead, before any investment decision. Most investment books aren’t trustworthy, because their authors are salespeople who are really making a pitch instead of trying to inform you. Malkiel is disinterested. He is a teacher with the intellectual discipline of a true financial economist, and yet he writes as vividly as a good journalist. getAbstract recommends this classic: all you need to know about the market is between its covers.

In this summary, you will learn

  • the facts of investing life, without a sales pitch to distort the information


Define a “Random Walk”
When we say that stock prices are a “random walk” we mean that short-term price moves are unpredictable. This infuriates Wall Street professionals whose comfortable living often depends on people paying them for their supposedly superior knowledge of what the market...
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About the Author

Burton G. Malkiel holds the Chemical Bank Chairman’s Professorship at Princeton University. He is a former member of the Council of Economic Advisors and serves on the boards of several major corporations, including the Vanguard Group of Investment Companies and Prudential Financial Corporation.

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