Mastering The Market Cycle: Getting the Odds on Your Side

by: Howard Marks (0)


The legendary investor shows how to identify and master the cycles that govern the markets.

We all know markets rise and fall, but when should you pull out, and when should you stay in? The answer is never black or white, but is best reached through a keen understanding of the reasons behind the rhythm of cycles. Confidence about where we are in a cycle comes when you learn the patterns of ups and downs that influence not just economics, markets, and companies, but also human psychology and the investing behaviors that result.

If you study past cycles, understand their origins and remain alert for the next one, you will become keenly attuned to the investment environment as it changes. You’ll be aware and prepared while others get blindsided by unexpected events or fall victim to emotions like fear and greed.

By following Marks’s insights—drawn in part from his iconic memos over the years to Oaktree’s clients—you can master these recurring patterns to have the opportunity to improve your results.

The Reviews

I was expecting a much more detailed explanation of market cycles and the techniques to exploit them. This book would be better titled "Why you should pay attention to market cycles". If you're looking for a technical book on tatical asset allocation through different market cycles, I highly recommend "Applied financial macroeconomics and investment strategy". Overall, if you are above novice level of investor I do not recommend this book. However, if you are novice level then this book can give you solid general philosophies and general strategies which is essential when beginning your investing journey.

Being blunt, most investment books suck - I have about a hundred of them on my shelves (which doesn't include the tons I've given away), and there's only a brief handful that were worth an entire read, much less rereads. But there are a precious few that get read again and again (Intelligent Investor, One Up and Beating the Street, anything by John Train, etc.) and these days I can feel that rare emotion welling up inside me when I know I'm learning something - something important. Mastering the Market Cycle is just such a book.In many ways, Marks is a very quirky writer. As other folks have noted, he does repeat things from time to time, and his style is so easy going you might be tempted to think it is simplistic - but don't make this insanely bad mistake. Marks is easy to read because he covers his material and thoughts with absolute precision, because he has thought long and hard about what to say, and the continuous repetition occurs because that's how things work in life - they are interconnected. Besides, repetition in this manner is EXACTLY how you want a complicated topic to be taught, and Marks is a master at instruction.Course, I have another reason for getting excited about this book - I recognize the scared frightened investor I was in 2008 and 2009, and if I'd read this book - or all those Memo's - and actually internalized them I'm next to certain my results would have been much improved. And isn't that what we want in our investment books - an improvement in our technique? I can think of no higher compliment.This is a phenomenal book and if you manage money for a living you'd be a fool not to read it, and if you invest for yourself you are going to learn a lot. I mean, a lot - and you are going to reread this thing again and again. This is a VERY deep thinking book by a guy with a lot to teach, and opportunities like this one don't come along very often.And you get this wisdom and knowledge for $18? Absolutely crazy - thanks to the author, thank you very much.

Unfortunately, would not recommend. Pretty simplistic and the material in the book has been covered in his memos. Recommend getting his first book and reading all of his memos instead.

I truly could not put this book down. I have been managing money for clients for 21+ years and the one individual who has had the biggest impact on my investment thinking, discernment and results is Howard. Like Howard's memos and his first book, The Most Important Thing, this book continues to help me look at investments/cycles on a distribution curve with a range of outcomes whereby as an investor you are looking for asymmetrical investment opportunities with counter-cyclical strategies--to quote, "When the market is low in its cycle, gains are more likely than usual, and losses are less likely." He reminds us that the "investor's goal is to position capital so as to benefit from future developments." To paraphrase Howard, "it isn't about buying any great company or the most admired company at any price, but it is truly about buying any company at the right price."Lastly, he also provides signposts with regard to inferring where we could be in the cycle--i.e. availability of credit or lack thereof; lower/higher lending standards; less/greater restrictive debt offerings; lack/abundance of enthusiasm/skepticism; widely held belief/disbelief by the masses in a specific investment.I hope you find his book and his teachings as valuable as I have.Thanks Howard for taking the time to write this~Luke

I waited impatiently for this book to arrive and was surprised that it didn't contain much information about actual market cycles or how to exploit them. Mostly contains some general investing advice that may be better suited for beginning investors. I do have great respect for the author, but actually preferred his first book to this and would recommend that book instead. I tend to not give reviews on books that I didn't love, but the title compelled me to this time.

Mastering The Market Cycle: Getting the Odds on Your Side
⭐ 4.4 💛 1436
kindle: $9.59
paperback: $9.04
hardcover: $4.85
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