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Praise for The Book

“Pablo Picasso spent a lifetime learning to paint like a child. Investors might be wise to do the same. Allan Roth’s How a Second Grader Beats Wall Street reminds us that the most important investment principles are actually simple truths that we lose sight of as our lives and investment approaches grow more complicated. By returning to the basics, we can both simplify our finances and improve our investment results.”

-- Don Phillips, Managing Director, Morningstar, Inc.

“Meet Kevin Roth: financial savant, successful money manager, and second grader. Kevin, you see, possesses several unfair advantages over the rest of us: he doesn’t read The Wall Street Journal, worry about the economy, or watch James Cramer (well, maybe he does, but only with the sound off). But he solidly understands the principles of investment management; How a Second Grader Beats Wall Street, which can be consumed almost as quickly and enjoyably as the chocolate milk on Kevin’s lunch tray, will let you in on his profitable secrets.”

-- William Bernstein, author of The Four Pillars of Investing.


"There has been no time in our financial history when implementing the simple investment plan in this book has been more important."

-- Dan Solin, author of The Smartest Investment Book You'll Ever Read and The Smartest 401(k) Book You'll Ever Read


“Don’t be put off by thinking the title is too cute. The great lessons of life are simple (but, as Warren Buffett advises, not easy). If you follow these important rules, successful investing is ‘child’s play.’”

-- Charles D. Ellis, author of Winning the Loser’s Game


“The 'Second Grader's Starter Portfolio' is one of the 8 great "Lazy Portfolios" we feature and update on DowJones/MarketWatch. Why? Because it's a winner, regularly beating the S&P 500. It's perfect for all Americans, young and young-at-heart, who are starting small and want to retire a millionaire someday.“

-- Paul B Farrell, JD, PhD, author, The Lazy Person's Guide to Investing; The Winning Portfolio; The Millionaire Code; Mutual Funds on the Net; The Millionaire Meditation; and Expert Investing on the Net


“You can make investing as complicated as you want. Or you can make it simple. The beauty of Kevin Roth's elegantly reasoned approach is not just that it's clearer and easier to execute than most investing advice today. It's also that in the long run, it's likely to put more money in your pocket.”

-- Eric Schurenberg, Former Managing Editor - Money Magazine


“One of the greatest gifts any author can bring to their reader is the ability to capture simplicity from complexity and convey the essence in readable, understandable fashion. Allan Roth does that with his book How a Second Grader Beats Wall Street. His book will help readers realize that fads and fashion are trumped by the steady, less risky returns that come from rational diversification and a disciplined commitment to it. Everything in Roth’s book has special relevance in today’s turbulent and treacherous times.”

-- George G. C. Parker, Dean Witter Distinguished Professor of Finance, Emeritus, Stanford Business School


“I have a very strong feeling that sometime in the not-to-distant future I will happily be working for Allan Roth's son! If you buy only one how-to book this year, this is the one! Allan Roth is a National Treasure.”
-- Mike Causey, senior correspondent,


“Allan presents in a very clever way why a second grader can outperform most investors, professional and individual. He demonstrates why smart investing is both simple and also why it is not easy for adults to execute because of behavioral mistakes to which they are prone.”

-- Larry Swedroe, author of Wise Investing Made Simple.

“Successful investing should be a matter of choice, not chance. Follow this book’s advice and your probabilities of success are 100% in your favor.”

-- Paul Merriman, author, Live It Up Without Outliving Your Money! (Wiley), and publisher of

“Allan Roth gets an A+. It is no surprise that a 2nd grader beats Wall Street because everything we need to know about beating the pros is taught in the first grade. That is when we learn to add and subtract. And after subtracting the high fees and commissions that the pros charge, their results fall far short of a simple market return.”

-- Richard Ferri, CFA, investment advisor and author of The ETF Book (Wiley)


“Allan Roth shatters the Wall Street myth that investing is too complicated for ordinary investors. Using his son, Kevin, as an example, Allan shows us, in his easy-to-read writing style, how we can construct a simple personal portfolio that is almost certain to outperform the vast majority of investors. If you have been looking for an easy-to-understand book about how to invest successfully--this is it.”

-- Taylor Larimore, co-author of The Bogleheads' Guide to Investing.


“Using just a bit of logic and a dash of arithmetic, Allan Roth lucidly explains why low-cost index funds should be the investment of choice for 2nd graders as well as their parents and grandparents.”

-- John Allen Paulos, mathematics professor at Temple University and the author of Innumeracy and A Mathematician Plays the Stock Market.


“Kevin, the second grader, is really smart and cool! He knows what it took me decades to learn. A smart strategy is to diversify broadly across US stocks, international stocks and high-grade US bonds using low-cost, tax-efficient index funds. He even taught me how individuals can increase their fixed-income returns without incurring higher risks. By following Kevin's advice, we, too, can be smart investors. But we may never be as cool as Kevin!”

-- William Reichenstein, Powers Chair in Investment Management at Baylor University.