Reminiscences of a Stock Operator


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LEFÈVRE, Edwin. Reminiscences of a Stock Operator. New York: George H. Doran, (1923). Octavo, original orange cloth. Housed in a custom clamshell box.

Rare first edition of “the most useful and most loved book ever written on the subject of trading and speculation,” in original cloth.

“Stock investing is a relatively recent phenomenon and the inventory of true classics is somewhat slim. When asked, people will always list books by Benjamin Graham, Burton G. Malkiel’s A Random Walk Down Wall Street, and Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits by Philip A. Fisher. You’ll know you’re getting really good advice if they also mention Reminiscences of a Stock Operator by Edwin Lefèvre. It is the thinly disguised biography of Jesse Livermore, a remarkable character who first started speculating in New England bucket shops at the turn of the century. Livermore, who was banned from these shady operations because of his winning ways, soon moved to Wall Street where he made and lost his fortune several times over. What makes this book so valuable are the observations that Lefèvre records about investing, speculating, and the nature of the market itself… Reminiscences is full of lessons that are as relevant today as they were in 1923 when the book was first published” (Harry C. Edwards). “Although a sizable portion of the book vividly describes the highs and lows of Livingston’s [or Livermore’s] exciting life, the meat of the book comes in the form of trading commandments that every successful trader can likely repeat even while asleep. These are the trading rules that have been passed down from mothers to daughters, fathers to sons, mentors to students. This is the book from which almost every subsequent general trading book is derived. If you have ever wondered where the trading rule ‘Never average down’ came from, just turn to page 154. Where did the comparison between greed and fear first originate? You’ll find it on page 130… It brings clarity as to why we trade and how to best go about it” (Tradingmarkets). First printing, with publisher’s colophon below copyright statement. Owner signature of Lawrence T. Goodman to half title, lettered on rear pastedown.

Text fine, light edge-wear, faint soiling to original cloth. A highly desirable copy in near-fine condition.

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