Sunday, November 16, 2014

Not Your Average Millionaire: The Hit and Miss Career of James Altucher

The career of media mogul James Altucher could be likened to a 20-year roller coaster ride, or a sprint through a minefield.  Few have experienced a career as erratic, and with as many highs and lows as that of Altucher. Despite his many setbacks, he has been a pace setter in the fields of finance, corporate ownership, management, writing, blogging and podcasting.

After studies at Cornell University and Carnegie Mellon University, Altucher did a three year stint at HBO, working in their IT department as an online producer. His first broadcast experience found him roaming the streets of New York at night as an HBO reporter, interviewing New Yorkers.

Altucher claims to have failed at 17 of the 20 companies that he has either founded or co-founded during his mostly chaotic career.  As he said on his podcast just today, “You gotta keep movin’”. And move he does. He founded Reset, a web design company, in 1996, then sold it five years later for around $10 million.  Within two years he had lost it all in failed business ventures.

Fast forward ten years. In 2006 he founded StockPickr, then turned around and sold the company for $10 million.

In the early years of Altucher’s career, TV stock market pitchman Jim Cramer hired him to write articles about stocks. That led him into increased involvement in the financial markets. From 2002 to 2005 he traded hedge funds. He then founded Formula Capital, an asset management firm, where he currently acts as managing director. He is also an angel investor in the fields of technology, biotech and energy.

Somehow Altucher has found time to write eleven books and countless magazine, newspaper, and blog articles. He began writing for the Wall Street Journal in 2009 and continues to the present day. In addition, he is a columnist for Financial Times,, and The Huffington Post, as well as a frequent guest on CNBC and many other television programs.

Not one to slow down and take a breath, Altucher launched a blog, Altucher Confidential, in 2010. It racked up over five million page views within the first year. Next came his podcast, The James Altucher Show, launched in January of 2014. In his first months online with his podcast he has compiled an impressive lineup of high-profile guests, including Mark Cuban, Dr. Wayne Dyer.

His newest book, as of summer, 2014, is The Power of No.

James Altucher’s books: The Power of No (Hay House), Choose Yourself (LionCrest), I Was Blind But Now I See (CreateSpace), FAQ Me (CreateSpace), Altucher Confidential: Ideas For a World Out of Balance (Round Table), How to Be the Luckiest Person Alive (CreateSpace), SuperCash (Wiley and Sons), 40 Alternatives to College (CreateSpace), The Forever Portfolio (Penguin), Trade Like a Hedge Fund (Wiley), Trade Like Warren Buffet (Wiley and Sons). 

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