I was recently given the opportunity to review the book “Rigged Money: Beating Wall Street At Its Own Game” by Lee Munson. As you can probably tell by the title of the book, Lee Munson makes his case that the stock market is a rigged game that is set up for institutional investors and the fat cats on Wall Street.
Lee Munson asserts that Wall Street is rigged to ensure that individual investors on Main Street are kept in the dark to continue to feed the system. Rigged Money includes a great combination of anecdotes and raw financial data to back up Lee Munson’s claims.
Rigged Money by Lee Munson
Rigged Money is a book that tries to convince you that almost everything that you thought you knew about investing is wrong. The advice that you have been given by Munson makes the claim that buy and hold is not dead…it was actually never even a viable option to start with.
One point by Lee Munson and his argument that I particularly did not like though is when he equates the buy and hold strategy to a buy and never sell strategy. I am personally a huge fan of the buy and hold methodology of investing, but I also caveat that with holding for a long period but eventually selling for profit. But, according to Munson, I am still engrained into Wall Street’s marketing machine. Lee Munson goes on in Rigged Money to talk about how diversification and asset allocation is often not set up correctly. And, that most investments still are somewhat correlated and move in tandem despite Wall Street’s assertion that investments such as stocks and bonds move inversely.
Topics Covered In Rigged Money
The book, Rigged Money, is broken down into three sections: the old school of thought, the Wall Street set up, and surviving the rigged game. Lee Munson leaves no stone on Wall Street unturned. He puts holes into the classic financial advisor’s sales pitch and tries to debunk the allure of such wide ranging topics like dividends, asset allocation, ETFs, liquidity, options, your 401k, and other topics.
In the book, Lee Munson makes his case that often academic scholars who have contributed to the world of finance have been more interested in pushing their hypothesis than actually promoting the greater good. He mentions specifically ideas from such financial legends as Fama and Malkiel.
He goes on to throw mud on the theory of a random walk and efficient markets which Malkiel pioneered. Munson also attacks diversification and asset allocation and compares them both to nothing more than a slick sales pitch from Wall Street to investors. It is very interested to hear of his lack of love for the asset allocation pie chart. That alone is an interesting argument with merit that readers will find interesting.
Who Is This Book For And Who Should Read Rigged Money?
Rigged Money is a good book for those who are both novice and experienced investors. It definitely provides the reader with a few things to think about instead of blindly giving your money to a broker or financial advisor simply to invest on your behalf which is always a horrible idea.
You should be involved in where your money is being invested, and you should understand why it is being invested in certain assets for you. While I don’t agree with everything that Munson has written in his book, he brings up some interesting points to think about.
Final Thoughts On Rigged Money
Rigged Money is an interesting book that challenges your preconceived notions and perceptions of Wall Street. For experienced investors who have grown up investing in the system as we know it now, some of the arguments that Lee Munson makes in Rigged Money may be a little hard to accept. Lee Munson does a good job presenting his arguments with a lot of statistics and data for the reader.