The author's main goal in writing Understanding Investments is to present the classic theories and strategies in the field of finance in a new, intuitive, and practical way. This text offers context and grounding information to students truly looking, as the title indicates, to understand investments.
This textbook brings a number of innovative features to the field:
1. Presentation of material from the economics point of view, stressing the interpretation of concepts, rather than their mere memorization and mechanical application.
2. Shorter, more streamlined chapters, so instructors and students won't be distracted by superfluous detail, and can instead focus on the most relevant issues.
3. Fewer chapters than in current textbooks, so instructors can comfortably cover all material within a semester.
4. Boxes with ‘International Focus’ vignettes, discussions ‘Applying Economic Analysis’ to relevant topics, and featured ‘Lessons from our Times’, allowing students to gain a deeper understanding of the material and its relevant context and applications.
5. Sections in each chapter discussing different investment strategies and their pros and cons.
6. Questions that solicit students' critical thinking skills and problems that require their quantitative expertise to address real-life problems - rather than rote, mechanical questions that merely require regurgitation.
"What impresses me about this textbook is its focus on engaging the student in the learning process. Some textbooks are more like reference material, but this textbook 1) emphasizes interpretation of concepts to facilitate student comprehension, 2) concisely focuses on the main issues and avoids unnecessary tangents that can derail students, and 3) incorporates current topics that motivate student interest in investments. Understanding Investments should definitely be considered by professors for their students in investments courses."
-- Anna Martin, Alois J. Theis Endowed Chair and Professor of Finance Department of Economics and Finance, Peter J. Tobin College of Business, St. John's University
"This new textbook "Understanding Investments" is coming at the perfect time to fill a void in the literature. Dr. Laopodis has done an outstanding job in presenting the subject from the Economics science point of view. Rather than boring the students with sterile math, he engages them with his intuitive and practical approach and the natural way in which he links economic theory and investments. Overall, an excellent textbook with many unique features that should make learning a pleasant and lasting experience."
-- Dr. Gregory Koutmos, Gerald M. Levin Professor of Finance and Graduate Finance Programs Coordinator, Fairfield University, Dolan School of Business
Part I: Investment Basics 1. The Investment Framework 2. The Investment Decision Process and Investment Strategies 3. Fundamentals of Risk and Return Part II: Financial Markets And Instruments 4. The Global Financial Environment 5. Money and Capital Market Instruments and Strategies 6. Investment Bankers and Investment Companies Part III: Portfolio Theory 7. Diversification and Asset Allocation 8. Efficient Diversification and Capital Market Theory 9. Market Efficiency and Behavioral Finance Part IV: Equity Securities 10. Equity and Fundamental Analysis 11. Equity Valuation and Investment Strategies Part V: Debt Securities 12. Bond Fundamentals and Valuation 13. Bond Portfolio Management and Performance Evaluation Part VI: Derivative Markets and Instruments 14. Option Markets and Valuation 15. Futures Markets and Strategies 16. Other Topics In Investments
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