Introduction: For Whom Is This Handbook, and Why?

In an inconspicuous corner of the investment business, there's a valuable circle of professionals having nothing to do with managing money. Rather than making investments, they make sentences. Armed with a facility for language, they pen literature and communications for the consumption of millions of investors—private and institutional—who entrust portfolio managers, advisors, and consultants with trillions of dollars in assets. Their words can sway investors' opinions, shape their attitudes, affect their decisions, and drive their behavior.

These are the industry's investment writers. This handbook is for them primarily—though not exclusively. It is intended for anyone tasked with the responsibility of writing for the investor. There are many, which is why this book is called The Investment Writing Handbook rather than The Investment Writer's Handbook. Still, to understand the context of this craft, it's worth highlighting the dedicated writers for whom this book is chiefly intended.

Investment writers are an ultra‐specialized class of communicators in a niche of the third degree. They are writers of financial services. They serve a well‐defined segment of that industry dealing exclusively with investments. And, within that segment, they write for what is known as the “buy side,” which comprises firms that purchase and sell securities on behalf of investors for money management.

Investment writers have counterparts on the “sell ...

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