Wall Street Guide to Starting Your Financial Life
Flash Point 2011
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Karen Blumenthal, like most people, is mystified by the stock market. Just why is it, she wonders, that seemingly good news can send a stock plummeting and bad news can send it skyrocketing again?

In Grande Expectations, she shows how money is made and lost by following one of America’s hottest growth stocks, Starbucks, through a year of rapid store openings, fancy new drinks, and clever promotions, revealing how the many players—big and small investors, company management, analysts, and the media—propel its shares up and down.

Blumenthal pulls back the curtain on the stock market to expose its quirks and inner workings, from the power of a penny of earnings and the unexpected impact of a stock split to the image-enhancing effects of a brand of bottled water. With a fly-on-the-wall, character-driven narrative, Grande Expectations not only makes investing interesting but also will help you make smarter and savvier investing choices by:

bullet Understanding how big pension and mutual fund managers decide whether to buy more Starbucks—or dump it
bullet Seeing the unique ways that analysts and other finance professionals assess an investment—dissecting not only the numbers but also the company’s management, demographics, and global opportunities
bullet Learning how Starbucks executives manage our expectations and keep excitement percolating about the business—and the stock
bullet Watching how a stock is traded and how that might affect your buying or selling
bullet Gleaning how multibillion-dollar private hedge funds make money on infinitesimal changes in a stock’s price
bullet Entering the dark, strange world of the short sellers
bullet Realizing how different people can make absolutely opposite bets and all still come out ahead

You’ll come away with new insights into how the stock market really works—the power of expectations, stock buybacks, and profits—and explore Starbucks’ phenomenal growth and whether it is sustainable. By unraveling the market’s mysteries, Grande Expectations shows how investing can be both profitable and understandable. Get ready for the ride of your life—and a lifetime of fruitful stock market success.

“…a fine stock primer. It covers everything from why companies buy back stock and split shares to how they handle the financial press and build and maintain a brand. The reporting is detailed, balanced and interesting. …The tone is breezy, but Blumenthal isn't afraid to ask the tough questions—or to get tossed from an annual meeting.” —Kiplinger’s “Best Investing Reads of 2007”

“If you want to know why a stock goes up and down, if you want to be able to make money with that information, this book is for you. I have never ever seen such an indepth and fascinating look at how a growth stock works. This book, while having a great read on Starbucks, transcends that one stock and gives you a tremendous insight into how the whole market works.” —Jim Cramer, Markets commentator for thestreet.com and host of CNBC’s Mad Money with Jim Cramer

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