The Manual of Ideas by John Mihaljevic


“The Manual of Ideas” by John Mihaljevic is a comprehensive guide to value investing and the strategies used by successful investors. The book compiles insights from prominent investors and distills their wisdom into a structured framework. It emphasizes the importance of thorough research, critical thinking, and a deep understanding of businesses before making investment decisions.

Mihaljevic introduces the concept of the “Nine Cs,” a checklist that helps investors evaluate potential investments based on criteria such as competitive advantage, capable management, and sensible capital allocation. The book also delves into the value investing principles of Benjamin Graham and Warren Buffett, highlighting the significance of intrinsic value and the margin of safety.

The book encourages investors to think independently, challenge conventional wisdom, and develop a contrarian mindset. It emphasizes the value of patience and discipline in investing, advocating for a long-term perspective rather than succumbing to short-term market fluctuations. Overall, “The Manual of Ideas” serves as a valuable resource for both novice and experienced investors, offering actionable insights and practical tools to navigate the complex world of investing.

10 Key Takeaways from The Manual of Ideas by John Mihaljevic:

  • Value Investing Principles: The book underscores the value investing philosophy, emphasizing the importance of identifying undervalued stocks that have the potential to deliver substantial returns over the long term.
  • Margin of Safety: Mihaljevic stresses the significance of a margin of safety in investing. This means buying stocks at a price significantly below their intrinsic value, reducing the risk of loss.
  • Thorough Research: Successful investing requires meticulous research. Investors should deeply analyze a company’s financials, industry trends, competitive positioning, and management quality before making investment decisions.
  • Contrarian Thinking: The book encourages investors to think independently and avoid herd mentality. By taking a contrarian approach, investors can identify opportunities that others might overlook.
  • Circle of Competence: Mihaljevic advocates for investing within one’s circle of competence – areas where an investor has a deep understanding. Staying within this circle helps minimize risks associated with unfamiliar industries or businesses.
  • Checklist Approach: The book introduces the “Nine Cs” checklist, a framework that includes criteria like competitive advantage, capable management, conservative accounting, and other factors to evaluate potential investments.
  • Long-Term Perspective: Investors should focus on the long-term value of an investment rather than short-term market fluctuations. This approach aligns with the teachings of legendary investors like Warren Buffett.
  • Quality Management: The book highlights the importance of investing in companies with capable and shareholder-friendly management teams. Strong leadership can drive a company’s success.
  • Patience and Discipline: Mihaljevic emphasizes the virtues of patience and discipline in investing. Investors should avoid impulsive decisions and stick to their well-researched strategies.
  • Continuous Learning: Investing is an ongoing learning process. The book encourages investors to continuously expand their knowledge, seek new insights, and adapt their strategies based on changing market conditions.


In conclusion, “The Manual of Ideas” by John Mihaljevic serves as a valuable resource for investors looking to navigate the complex world of value investing. Through its comprehensive exploration of fundamental principles, practical checklists, and insightful case studies, the book equips readers with the knowledge and tools necessary to make informed investment decisions. Mihaljevic underscores the importance of rigorous research, a contrarian mindset, and a long-term perspective, all of which are vital for achieving success in the stock market. By emphasizing the value of continuous learning, patient discipline, and adherence to a circle of competence, the book encourages investors to approach their craft with both prudence and confidence. Ultimately, “The Manual of Ideas” offers a roadmap for aspiring value investors to intelligently assess opportunities and build a robust portfolio that aligns with their financial goals.



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