Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Warren Buffett's $3 Billion Goldman Anniversary (BRK.A; GS)

Update: Goldman potpourri, immediately above.
Original post:
I can't tell you how big a kick I get from this story. On a Sep. 15 MarketBeat post, "Warren Buffett Cell Phone Skills: Did They Doom Lehman?", I ended a comment by saying:
...My absolute fav has to be taking GS for 10% money AND warrents.
essentially repeating my comment on MB's June 19 post, "Gartman: 'Warren Buffett is an Idiot"':

Mr. Gartman is a lightweight.
As donzoab points out, free cash flow is key. It allows you to play in the big leagues.
That and being able to cut opportunistic deals with a single phone call to Charlie or Sokol.
When Gartman takes Goldman as deep as Warren did, 10% money and warrents! (in the money $1.1 Bil.) I’ll pay attention to his comments on BRK.

So yeah, I get a kick out of Omaha insurance salesmen who get the better of Goldman Sachs. Here's the story from CNBC:

It's 12 months later and Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway is $3 billion richer.

One year ago today, on September 23, 2008, with the financial world still reeling from the collapse of Lehman Brothers just days before, Buffett stunned Wall Street with a massive vote of confidence for Goldman Sachs.

In a late-day news release, Goldman announced a private deal to sell Berkshire $5 billion of perpetual preferred stock. In effect, Berkshire was giving Goldman a massive loan. And you don't loan that kind of money to a firm you think could follow Lehman down the drain.

In that release, Buffett called Goldman "an exceptional institution" with an "unrivaled global franchise, a proven and deep management team and the intellectual and financial capital to continue its track record of outperformance."

The next day, in an interview on CNBC, Buffett said, "The price was right, the terms were right, and the people were right." >>>MORE