I'm looking to start learning about hardcore securities analysis and I see a couple MBA courses that use Essentials of Investments or Investments both by Bodie, Kane, and Marcus.

Investments is about 200 pages longer, so I'm guessing that Essentials is just a cut down version of Investments. Can anyone verify this?

  • Graham and Dodd's Security Analysis might be a good start. Zvi Bodie believes in avoiding stock. His 'Worry Free Investing' offered advice that today would require one to save about 50% of their income to put into TIPs. A smart guy, I just disagree with his conclusions. Commented Dec 2, 2013 at 21:46
  • True, but that's because he believes that retirement money is too important for risky investments and maintenance of capital is the top priority, he suggests having separate money for investing in securities. I'm planning on reading Security Analysis, but I've been told Zvi Bodie's Investing books are excellent foundational books and are aimed at (future) finance professionals. highered.mcgraw-hill.com/sites/0073530700/… Commented Dec 2, 2013 at 22:40
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    Who am I to argue with an Academic? Read him as well, if you wish. Commented Dec 2, 2013 at 23:11
  • I don't particularly agree with his investment advise, but he seems to be a well respected scholar in the field. Commented Dec 2, 2013 at 23:26

2 Answers 2


Reading the descriptions on Amazon.com it appears Investments is a graduate text and Elements of Investments is the undergraduate version of the text.


They are actually both undergraduate texts; however, Investments is FAR more complex. Essentials of Investments really waters down the statistical and mathematical notation while Investments does not. Investments also has an entire section (4-5 chapters) called options, futures, and other derivatives while Essentials of Investments does not. [Of course, if you want to learn about options, futures, and other derivatives, there is a seminal book by John Hull with that exact title.]

That notwithstanding, neither book is sophisticated enough to be considered a true graduate school textbook in quantitative investment theory. No grad schools worth their salt are going to rely too heavily on Investments in a specialized finance curriculum. It's a great book to start out, though.

  • Which would be graduate textbooks on investments in your opinion?
    – Thiago
    Commented Jan 30, 2020 at 14:41

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