This week I am speaking withDr. Jay Leavitt, founder and Investment Strategist for the Primata Funds. Prior to the Primata funds, Jay owned and managed, a website that specialized in financial newsletters. He has a Ph.D. in applied mathematics and spent twenty years as the director of academic computing at SUNY, Buffalo.

So, what's in your library Jay?

New Option Strategy Course by Lawrence McMillan - This is an excellent primer for trading options. What I found most interesting about the book is that it teaches how to visualize the behaviour of options. It showed me how to combine graphic constructs to build option strategies.

Option Profits: The Naked Truth - Profit Using Little Known Conservative Non-Directional Strategies Used by Option Pros. by Mike Parnos - Mike writes a syndicated column called The Couch Potato Trader. He writes in a very personable style and adds humor to his writing. One of his more lively quotes is "God gave man two ends - one to sit on and one to think with. Ever since then, man's sucess or failure has been dependent on the one he useed most." In this book, he talks about how to handle options in general, and iron condors in particular. 

The Black Swan - The Impact Of The Highly Improbable by Nassim Nicholas Taleb - Nassim is a professor of risk engineering at NYU. I believe a lot of what he has to say about risk. In fact, I am a member of the Carolina Black Swan Group, an investment/trading group that meets once a month to discuss issues brought up within the book and related topics. I will be presenting my fund's strategy to the group at next month's meeting.

No Higher Honor: A Memoir Of My Years In Washington by Condoleezza Rice - I recommend the audio version because it is read by Condoleezza. While I strongly disagree with her party's politics, I highly regard her ethics and opinions. She records her experiences as a young black girl in the segregated South and she has based her life on taking the best out of her past. One of the highlights of the book is her reaction to a personal slight by then President Bush. Although she and Bush had mutual respect for one another, when slighted she did not fail to explain to him the slight, even though it occurred in the oval office.

The Andre Gide Reader by Andre Gide - To be frank, this is not the Andre Gide book that I read. When I was in high school and college I took french and the classes often had collections of short stories by Andre Gide. After finishing graduate school, I became a Fulbright scholar at the University of Pisa and they immediately asked me to teach a course. I accepted and then realized that the course was to be taught in Italian. I managed to get through the semester by bastardizing my French, much of which came from text books by Andre Gide. The experience had a huge impact on my life, and I will always have fond memories of my Andre Gide text books. I challenge you to find anyone else who can honestly say that!

Thanks Jay.

As always, you can buy the books Jay mentioned in the Sniper Book Bin

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