Van Tharpís Favorite Trading Books
I'm often asked
"What are your favorite trading books?" Here I'll
briefly describe my favorite trading books.
I don't list them
in any particular order because Iím not sure I can rank them
Iíve ranked them alphabetically by author, except that
three of the books are my own and Iíve included them at the end.
In addition, most of them are classics, so my description
of each of them will be brief.
In most cases
they are available for sale through our Amazon bookstore and links
are provided. If not, a note will follow the description.
Van K. Tharp
Easterling, Ed: Unexpected
Returns: Understanding Secular Stock Market Cycles.
Fort Bragg, CA
House, 2005. This
is a self published book in which Ed does a masterful job
of helping people get a major perspective of why the stock
market will do what itís going to do.
If you want to understand the big picture, then
this book is a must read.
Michael Alexanderís book, Stock Market Cycles is
also a favorite book, but I only wanted to pick one book
of this type, so this is the one I selected. Buy Unexpected Returns from Amazon
Faith, Curtis: Way
of the Turtle. New York
: McGraw-Hill, 2007. I
was so impressed by it that I asked to write the foreword
and I did. First, it paints a very clear picture of what
is necessary for trading success.
Curtis says in very concise terms that itís not
about the trading system.
Instead, itís about the traderís ability to
execute the trading system. Secondly, it probably has the
most lucid description of how some of the principles of
behavior finance apply to and influence trading that
Iíve ever read. The
third aspect is that I really like Faithís emphasis on
game theory and using it to explain how a trader should
All of this together with a number of stories about
Curtisí experiences as a Turtle make it a very valuable
Graham, Benjamin. The
Intelligent Investor: The Classic Text on Value Investing.
New York: Harper, 1995. Value investing is one of the best ways for the
long term investor to beat the market.
This is the classic text of value investing and
itís the essence behind much of what Warren Buffet does.
So if you have the desire to do this sort of
investing, then this book is a must read. Amazon
LeBeau, Charles and David W. Lucas. The Technical Traderís Guide to Computer Analysis
of the Futureís Market.
Homewood, IL: Irwin, 1992. Iíve
been associated with Chuck for a long time and heís a
presenter in our systems workshop.
And the reason he is a presenter is this book.
It probably does the best job of any book up to
itís publication date of taking apart systems into
components and showing you how to logically think about
and develop systems. Amazon.
Schwager, Jack. Market
Wizards. New York:
of Finance , 1988. Jack
Schwager interviews 16 of the top traders in the world
(and he also interviewed me.)
This book, like no other until its sequel, really
elucidates whatís important for trading success.
Iíve always said that trading success consists of
the commonalities of what great traders do and how they
if you want to learn that, then this book is the place to
Schwager, Jack. The
New Market Wizards.
New York: Harper Collins, 1992.
There are a lot more than 16 great traders and
Schwager presents some more of them in this classic book.
I personally think the William Eckhardtís
interview alone is worth the price of the book. Amazon..
Wilder, Wells. New
Concepts in Technical Analysis.
Greensboro, NC: Trend Research, 1978.
This is the oldest book on my list and Iíve
included it because it is the original presentation of
some of the classical tools of trading including ADX, ATR,
and many other classics.
If you are not familiar with these concepts, now is
the time to start and this is the book to start with. Amazon
Books Authored by
The Definitive Guide to Position Sizing Strategies:
How to Evaluate Your System and Use Position Sizing
to Meet Your Objectives. 2nd ed Cary,
NC: IITM, 2013.
I think this one is a new classic. It includes how to measure the quality of your
system objectively, no matter what style of trading you
have or what instruments you trade. It includes everything you could possibly
want to know about how to use position sizing, depending
upon the quality of your system, to meet your objectives. Itís that simple and Iíve very excited about
available through VTI.
|9) Trading Beyond the Matrix: The Red Pill for Traders and Investors. Cary, NC: Van Tharp 2013. I can say without a shadow of a doubt that this is my favorite, individual book that I’ve written. My goals with Trading Beyond the Matrix were to write the ultimate psychological book, and to show the key inputs and outputs of successful traders: what people did and how they did it, then the results were. It’s my belief that if someone thoroughly studied all of the information in this book and had the discipline to follow through on the actions, they would be successful in the markets. From Amazon. From VTI.
The Peak Performance Course for Traders and Investor (5
books Iíll count as one). Cary,
NC: Van Tharp, 1989.
When I developed the Investment Psychology
Inventory to measure strengths and weaknesses of traders,
people started saying, ďI totally agree with your
analysis, but how can I use this information to improve my
a result, I wrote the home study course over a five year
period to do just that.
The course should be must reading for anyone who is
serious about trading or investing.
And if there is a number one choice among the all of these
books, this set is it. Learn
Super Trader: Make Consistent Profits in Good and Bad
Edition New York: McGraw-Hill, 2010.
Transform yourself from a mild-mannered investor
into a proactive trader who outperforms the markets! From
Trade Your Way to Financial Freedom, 2nd Edition.
New York: McGraw-Hill, 2007. If
you really want to understand systems and how to approach
the markets, then this book is also a must read. From
Amazon. From VTI.
Last revised: February 17, 2015