Warren Buffett called out stock-market gamblers, dismissed bitcoin as worthless, and lauded Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos in 2022.
The 92-year-old investor said he’s not planning to retire as Berkshire Hathaway CEO anytime soon, slammed companies that report misleading financials, and recommended one way for people to offset inflation.
He made the comments in his yearly shareholder letter, at Berkshire’s annual meeting, and during an interview with Charlie Rose.
1. “Charlie and I are not stock-pickers; we are business-pickers.” (Buffett was referring to his longtime business partner and Berkshire’s vice-chairman, Charlie Munger.)
2. “Deceptive ‘adjustments’ to earnings – to use a polite description – have become both more frequent and more fanciful as stocks have risen. Speaking less politely, I would say that bull markets breed bloviated bull.”
3. “Teaching, like writing, has helped me develop and clarify my own thoughts. Charlie calls this phenomenon the ‘orangutan effect’: If you sit down with an orangutan and carefully explain to it one of your cherished ideas, you may leave behind a puzzled primate, but will yourself exit thinking more clearly.”
4. “I know I’ll win over time. That doesn’t mean I’ll beat everybody else, or anything like that. But the game is very, very, very easy if you have the right lessons in your mind about what you’re buying.” (Buffett was underscoring that he views shares as pieces of a business.)
5. “We have a successor in place, but he’s not warming up. I’m in overtime but I’m out there.”
6. “Elon is taking on General Motors and Ford and Toyota, and all these people who’ve got all this stuff, and he’s got an idea and he’s winning. That’s America. You can’t dream it up. It’s astounding.”
7. “It couldn’t happen but it did. If they’d stopped in Omaha on the drive from New York to Seattle and he’d said, ‘What do you think of this idea?’ I would have said, ‘Good luck, Jeff.'” (Buffett was referring to Amazon’s unlikely evolution from an online bookseller to a technology titan under founder Jeff Bezos.)
8. “Sometimes the stock market is quite investment-oriented, and other times it’s almost totally a casino, a gambling parlor — and that existed to an extraordinary degree in the last couple of years, encouraged by Wall Street.”
9. “If you told me you owned all of the bitcoin in the world, and you offered it to me for $25, I wouldn’t take it because what would I do with it? I would have to sell it back to you one way or another. It isn’t going to do anything.”
10. “The best protection against inflation is still your own personal earnings power. The best investment by far is anything that develops yourself.”
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