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There are a great number of resources available on the topics discussed on this site. Some of the more useful ones are listed here, both hard-copy and on-line links. The best are noted as indispensable.

You can help us by letting us know the resources you find most helpful. Please contact us.

Business Resources

Publications on Paper

"Brokers and Dealers in Securities - AICPA Audit and Accounting Guide", 2006, is an excellent resource on the topics discussed on this site.

This version is a substantial expansion of earlier versions (it is over twice as long as the 1992 edition, for instance). Not only is it current with the more recent accounting and regulatory changes, but the background information on the industry, securities processing, and the regulatory requirements has been extensively expanded and enhanced.

We do hope that the next edition includes an index.

It is a little used and greatly under appreciated resource. Indispensable.

Whereas the FASB makes its publications available on-line as well as in hard-copy, the AICPA does not.

"Securities Operations: A Guide to Trade and Position Management", by Michael Simmons, 2002, addresses many of the same issues that the this site does.

The book has some similarities to [AfterTrade86], but also many differences. Weiss' book focuses on all components of the Operations Department, so naturally cannot go into extensive detail on each topic. Simmons, on the other hand, is focused on certain of the processing done there, as indicated in his subtitle. Simmons' discussion of position keeping (both trade date and the stock record) is quite extensive. On the other hand he does not address many of the groups within Ops; he has no discussion of the Margin Department or P&S, for example. For that kind of information go to Weiss.

Simmons' book has one of the few good descriptions of realized P&L. He also addresses international securities, which is a plus.

This is the best reference we know of for the topics we're concerned with on this site. Indispensable. If you only have one resource, this is the one to have. The only question is why no one wrote such a book earlier; it has been greatly needed.

"ACCOUNTING: The Language of Business", by Weil, et. al., 2005 (Eleventh Edition). This is an excellent book on accounting terms, as well as containing the always-popular chapter on "Accounting Magic". The Eleventh edition includes the expected updates to the terms themselves, and also very useful material in the chapter "Corporate Scandals: The Accounting Underpinnings". Indispensable; the Fowler of accounting.

Do take a moment to take a look at the list on the inside front cover of those who have made suggestions, particularly the individual from Montclair, NJ.

Unfortunately, it appears that the publisher is no longer in business, and the book is out of print.

"After the Trade is Made: Processing Securities Transactions", by David Weiss, 2006 (Revised Third Edition). This is probably the most popular book within IT departments on this topic. It is particularly useful for understanding what each group (e.g., P&S, Margin, Corporate Actions) within a securities firm does. This edition is reasonably up-to-date and has an improved organization over earlier editions.

See [SecuritiesOps02] for further discussion.

"Barron's Dictionary of Finance and Investment Terms", by Downes and Goodman, 1998. A very handy pocket-sized dictionary.

Web Links

The Financial Accounting Standards Board is the designated organization in the private sector for establishing standards of financial accounting and reporting. They have produced a number of documents, both of a conceptual and a specific nature, of tremendous value to the topics discussed on this website. Their website is The following are documents available on-line that are of particular relevance to our topics.
"FASB Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 157: Fair Value Measurements", September, 2006, is the most recent standard on determining fair value of securities. It amends and/or replaces many of the earlier Statements on this topic; see Appendix D.

Interestingly, it disallows the consideration of the size of the position ("blockage") in determining fair value.

"FASB Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 133: Accounting for Derivative Instruments and Hedging Activities", 1998, is similar to Statement 115, but for derivatives.
"FASB Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 115: Accounting for Certain Investments in Debt and Equity Securities", 1993, discusses the different treatments for held-to-maturity securities, trading securities, and available-for-sale securities. It provides a very useful background for the different approaches that were adopted.
"Concepts Statement No. 6: Elements of Financial Statements" is an excellent discussion of reporting, at a fundamental level. It includes the structure of financial statements, the comprehensive income framework, realized and unrealized P&L, and many other important topics. Highly recommended.
"Concepts Statement No. 5: Recognition and Measurement in Financial Statements of Business Enterprises" discusses (among many other topics) marketable securities, realized (and realizable) revenues and gains, and recognition.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has an excellent gateway to laws and regulations relating to securities.
Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (with updates). This act is a complement to the 1933 act and addresses transactions in ("exchanges of") securities. This act is more relevant to the topics on this site. It is about 4 times the length of the 1933 Act.
Securities Act of 1933 (with updates). This act addresses the registration and issuance of securities.

The SEC was created under Section 4 of the 1934 Act. The SEC also enforces the 1933 Act, which is why the SEC is the "Securities and Exchange Commission".

Wachowicz's Web World -- Glossary Portal is very nice set of links to dictionaries, glossaries, and learning aids for finance and accounting topics.
The NASDAQ Glossary is an excellent for many finance, investment, and regulatory terms.
Investopedia is a popular dictionary of securities and investment terms.

Technical Resources

Publications on Paper

"Data Modeling Essentials", by Simsion and Witt, 2005, is an intermediate reference on data modeling.
"Data Model Patterns: Conventions of Thought", by David C. Hay, 1996, is a good book on business data modeling. It is very much a practitioner's book. The author clearly understands the content behind what he is modeling (not as common an occurrence as one would hope) and shows a real-world appreciation of the importance of conventions. Be sure not to miss the "Universal Data Model".
"The Data Modeling Handbook" , by Reingruber and Gregory, 1994, is a good reference for the real-world, advanced data modeler.

Web Links

No Silver Bullet — Essence and Accidents of Software Engineering is Fred Brooks' classic discussion of software design and development in the real world. First published in 1986, and reprinted in IEEE's Computer magazine in 1987, it remains required reading (and re-reading) for everyone involved with software, whether in IT or not. Indispensable.

Wikipedia has an introduction to the paper, with references and links.

Wikipedia: design patterns is a nice introduction to patterns within software development.
Wikipedia: Adapter pattern discusses the most common design pattern encountered in financial application development, Adapter.
Wikipedia: data modeling is a useful introduction to the topic, with links to related topics.
Data Modeling 101 is Scott Ambler's overview of data modeling, including links to useful sites.
MicroMind is an award-winning software development and training company.

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