Gordon Pape is Canada’s best-known financial author, and tax-free savings accounts are probably the most important investment shelter for Canadians to understand.
This book is easy to read and very informative. It has been updated for 2013 with all the recent updated rules and anecdotal stories from the 2008 stock market crash.
Rich Dad, Poor Dad
This is one of the first financial book I ever read. It’s an oldie but a goodie. I think this would be a good staring point for anyone trying to understand personal finance.
In it, Robert Kiyosaki explains, using very simple diagrams, how to create a personal balance sheet and income statement. Understanding how these two items relate to each other is the key to figuring out why you are always broke.
Please just ignore all the stuff about flipping houses after doubling their value with a coat of paint. That might have worked in 1997 but not today.
The Millionaire Next Door
This book is a bit dry and might take a while to read, but is probably one of the most important books written about wealth, lifestyle and what we can learn from those who immigrated to North America.
The research for The Millionaire Next Door is the most comprehensive ever conducted on who the wealthy are in America – and how they got that way.
The authors went to “rich” neighbourhoods and interviewed the people who lived there. The majority of them had negative net worths! When they finally tracked down the real millionaires, many of them arrived in beat up trucks wearing cowboy boots.
When one of the true millionaires was offered a glass of 1970 Bordeaux, he said: “I drink scotch and two kinds of beer – free and Budweiser!”
The Lazy Investor
This is the book that changed my whole investment strategy. It’s simple to read yet profound in its information.
In it, Derek Foster explains how he was able to retire at the age of 34 with a simple investment strategy and a modest income.
The book details a step-by-step plan for you to gradually accumulate wealth over time without falling victim to the high fees many beginner investors pay.
A strategy simple enough for anyone to understand and one that runs on “autopilot” once set up.
The War of Art
Not a book on finance. Not a book on acting. A book on ending procrastination.
I was rehearsing for an acting class and my partner was always late, or cancelling our meetings. I didn’t want a confrontation, so I lent her my copy of this book instead.
She told me she couldn’t put it down once she started reading it. She never missed another rehearsal and even showed up early every time.
From the back cover:
In this powerful, straight-from-the-hip examination of the internal obstacles to success, bestselling author Steven Pressfield shows readers how to identify, defeat, and unlock the inner barriers to creativity.
The complex subject of global economics explained in the form of a children’s book about 3 men living on an island and catching fish with their bare hands.
You could read it in one afternoon and have a pretty good understanding of this daunting subject.