Question about Books

A couple of people have written me asking questions about books for the class.

First, the books required are on the syllabus.  One of you pointed out that the syllabus was inconsistent with the bookstore’s list, so let me clarify.  There are four required books.  The College Bookstore should have all of them, but looking more closely at what they do have, it looks like they only have three of them:



Echoing the order of the Bookstore’s list, the first three books are:

Course Reader
I selected the articles in the course reader to be important, interesting, and brief. Strictly speaking, these articles are not about financial modeling or data analysis, but rather are more generally about finance, investing, and business. The intent is to provide interesting materials that will spark a broader interest.   This you’ll have to purchase from the Middlebury bookstore.

Financial Modeling
I’ve looked at a lot of books on financial modeling. Most of them are either good at the finance and bad at the Excel or vice versa. This one was pretty good on both subjects.  It’s about $65 on Amazon, marked down from $95.  As a former financial aid student, general cheapskate, and bargain shopper, I know this is a lot…especially for a paperback.

Title: Using Excel for Business Analysis: A Guide to Financial Modeling Fundamentals
Author: Danielle Stein Fairhurst.
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons. Singapore Pte. Ltd. 2012


Joel Greenblatt is well respected as one of Wall Street’s best investors, and his books have inspired a generation of investors.  We’re only reading the first 50 pages, or so.  This is a popular book that shouldn’t be difficult to find in a decent library or bookstore.  It’s ok to buy the either the current version with the yellow cover or the prior version with the green and gold cover that looks like this:


Title: You Can Be A Stock Market Genius
Author: Joel Greenblatt
Link: or


The fourth book is this one:

There are a lot of excel blogs. One of the best is, and they recently published a helpful, short volume, that covers some of the most useful functions.  I *thought* the bookstore was going to carry this as a printed volume, but I guess it’s only a downloadable book, which is why I don’t see it on their list.  If the bookstore doesn’t carry it, you can download it directly from Chandoo or Amazon.  Either way, it should be about $10, however, I may be able to arrange for a discount code that may bring the price down by a few dollars.

Title: The VLOOKUP Book
Author: Purnachandra Rao Duggirala
Publisher:, 2013
Here’s a link from Chandoo to purchase at $4.99 instead of $9.99:







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