Monday, May 3, 2010

Omaha World-Herald Coverage of the 2010 Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting (BRK.B; BRK.A)

Last year the "As close to a transcript..." link went to the World-Herald. This year MarketBeat took the nod.
If I recall correctly, an Omaha friend once told me there were forty families worth $100 million or more based on their Berkshire holdings.
He died, so I can't verify the quote.
His estate was in nine figures.
UPDATE: I just checked with a friend who said there were a dozen centi-millionaires and another 2-3 dozen worth $10-99 million.
Here's the World-Herald:

Fun and games with Berkshire

The financial industry needs regulation to control the innate human tendencies of greed and envy, Warren Buffett and his longtime business partner, Charlie Munger, said Sunday at the end of their Berkshire Hathaway Inc. shareholders' weekend.

Munger, vice chairman of Berkshire, likened some of today's Wall Street activity to a circus where the tiger has gotten loose and is “acting like a tiger.” The solution, he said, is not to beat up the tiger but rather to improve the “tiger-trainer” so the animal will be under control.

At the same time, he and Buffett, chairman and CEO of Omaha-based Berkshire, continued their defense of New York City's Goldman Sachs Inc., which they said is the best investment banking firm in the country and the one least involved in casino-like dealings.

It's up to Congress, the two men said during a press conference at the Omaha Marriott hotel, to enact laws that will restrain Wall Street firms from what they called “high-IQ asininity.”

That's when smart executives ignore common sense and good judgment and make decisions that lead to disaster, not just for themselves but for the entire economy, Buffett said.

He and Munger also discussed a wide range of topics, including how to choose someone to eventually assume Buffett's investment decision-making, the chances of big railroad mergers and, according to Munger, the need for China to end corruption and discourage excessive gambling among its people.

Buffett and Munger had the 100 or so journalists and others at the press conference laughing at times. Early on, Buffett bit open a plastic wrapper so the two could snack on peanut brittle. Munger drank diet Coca-Cola, and Buffet drank regular Coke.

They repeated some of their regular jokes. Munger said envy is the worst of the “seven deadly signs” because “you can't have any fun doing it.”

“You take gluttony and lust, and you can have a hell of a weekend,” Buffett said....MORE

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