Warren Buffett Can’t Find Anything Big to Buy

Jul 2014
35,320
9,275
midwest
#11
Remember the good old days when these geezers would retire and give the bulk of their money to philanthropic causes?
Buffet has given away billions already.

Over $46 Billion since 2000.

CNBC has called him the most charitable billionaire.

Anything else?
 
Feb 2011
16,489
5,756
Boise, ID
#12
Oh, well excuse me for not being more careful before allowing my jaw to drop open when I hear that anyone; person, company or investment firm, has 100 billion dollars in cash to go shopping with.

Wealth inequality is a real thing. Did you know that the Walton family makes more money in one minute than it's employees make in a year?
I don’t care if you thought “wow that’s a lot of money,” but “we gotta tax the rich” is not the correct take-home message. This cash belongs to a lot of other people that have asked BH to invest for them. BH is ambivalent because the belief is that prices are too high.
But I truly believe this shit is rigged so people who work hard their entire lives can't keep their heads above water, always worrying about money, always one emergency away from bankruptcy.
Nothing about the story of how cash-heavy BH is at the moment has anything to do with something being “rigged.” BH thinks things are overpriced.
Is there nothing we can do to get the wealthy to start investing with their hearts?
No one does that, wealthy or otherwise. If it was purely “from the heart,” it wouldn’t be investment, it’d be donation.
There doesn't seem to be a single billionaire who's out to prove you do anything with money except use it to make more money and if you can screw over your employees to do it, that's even better.
That’s untrue and nonsensical. This story is not about billionaires screwing people over to get rich. BH invests millions of other people’s money with the sole purpose of making more money. You could go buy a share of BH, and if you did, WHY would that be? To get a positive return, obviously. That’s BH’s entire purpose.
 
Last edited:
Likes: publius3
Feb 2011
16,489
5,756
Boise, ID
#13
Remember the good old days when these geezers would retire and give the bulk of their money to philanthropic causes?
The Giving Pledge - Wikipedia

Related news: Berkshire Hathaway battered by Kraft-Heinz woes, posting a Q4 loss and a $3 billion writedown

At least half the country has this compulsive reaction whenever hearing about any large sum of money. Internally and perhaps without realizing it, they instantly think, "why does (x) amount of money exist somewhere when I have so little of it comparatively?" and the immediate feeling is unfairness/injustice, and then the immediate thought after that is "government needs to take some of that away from this other place and spread it around," as if splitting up a bag of granola bars with friends on a trail hike is how economics and finance work.

There have always been people with basically zero investable financial assets. Many of them struggle to meet basic needs, or get by but struggle to advance, and the primary risk they face is job loss or disability, but they are exposed to basically no financial market risks because they have no assets invested.

Others have some assets invested, often either in their own 401k style plan or perhaps eventual entitlement to pension plan benefits, which in either case get invested in shares of companies, and they also have assets in the form of equity in their home. The wealthy just have more assets.

Generally, none of these people become wildly better off during market downturns, when companies are losing money, stocks are crashing, the economy is headed for recession. The ultra-rich certainly don't become better off. They lose billions and billions, poof. People with money in 401k style plans lose value. Pensions that people are supposed to draw benefits from day become much worse off. And the people who have no assets invested, they may eventually be affected indirectly by it all, if it gets bad enough.

But long story short, we're all basically in the same ship. Generally there isn't a group of people that becomes wildly better off by making another group wildly worse off. No one really wants a recession except those few who are trying to time markets, betting on a crash, shorting stocks, etc., but these people are not the norm. And for these reasons, the us vs. them, rich vs. poor mantra just does not hold up. Maybe we can and should do a better job of trying to directly put public money to work to improve living standards broadly, and how best to go about that is up for debate, but that doesn't mean that the rich v. poor rhetoric is good for anything except winning voter support from gullible, irrationally angry people.
 
Last edited:

Blueneck

Former Staff
Jun 2007
53,420
39,689
Ohio
#14
I don’t care if you thought “wow that’s a lot of money,” but “we gotta tax the rich” is not the correct take-home message. This cash belongs to a lot of other people that have asked BH to invest for them. BH is ambivalent because the belief is that prices are too high.


Nothing about the story of how cash-heavy BH is at the moment has anything to do with something being “rigged.” BH thinks things are overpriced.


No one does that, wealthy or otherwise. If it was purely “from the heart,” it wouldn’t be investment, it’d be donation.


That’s untrue and nonsensical. This story is not about billionaires screwing people over to get rich. BH invests millions of other people’s money with the sole purpose of making more money. You could go buy a share of BH, and if you did, WHY would that be? To get a positive return, obviously. That’s BH’s entire purpose.
Whatever. This is the world we live in so there's no reason for me to be upset that we excuse this pathological hoarding of money.

A lot of his charitable giving consists of donating shares of BH, can't help but wonder what's that about.

Warren Buffett donates $3.4 billion to Gates' and family charities | Reuters

I guess I should be happy wealthy people give any money away at all. Not sure what these charities are or what they do, but I'm sure it's all on the up and up and provides a lot of jobs for people sitting around deciding who deserves charity and who doesn't and that the recipients are compatible with Buffet's beliefs. Must be nice to able to donate to charity, I never do because I can't afford to, so I don't have a clue what it feels like to control other people's destinies.

Maybe that's why these people never retire. They're addicted to the groveling people are willing to do to get even a fraction of what they give.
 
Mar 2012
54,620
36,274
New Hampshire
#15
Remember the good old days when these geezers would retire and give the bulk of their money to philanthropic causes?
Lots of them didnt hang on so long, they retired earlier in their 60s and went off to live the good life. Now these guys are 80 and still hanging on. It really is time to give a new generation a chance. Same for politicians.
 
Likes: Blueneck
Sep 2014
4,597
1,369
South FL
#16
we excuse this pathological hoarding of money.
There is no hoarding of money as you are thinking of it. If you want to, you can surely pile up pieces of paper, but that's not applicable here.

When Berkshire Hathaway, Apple or Ford have 'cash' its not some pile of cash actually. That cash actually is 'invested' but its invested in what we would call very liquid investments or 'cash equivalents'

Recently Kraft Heinz got clobbered in the market and they took a write down on many of their brands and BH was invested in these brands. The problem that Berkshire Hathaway and Buffet have today is in identifying 'undervalued' assets and that's because of the proliferation of information. There's umpteen analysts for every stock and on top of that if you want to say, find stocks with a P/E under 10:1 with a 5% dividend yield trading at or near 5 year lows....I mean, you can find that information in 10 seconds now. And that is what Buffet was historically very good at identifying. Buffet was essentially good at 'beating' the market but to beat the market you need an information advantage that today is difficult to achieve.
 

Macduff

Moderator
Apr 2010
93,381
31,358
Pittsburgh, PA
#17
This is actually a big problem, companies have a lot of cash to spend but the market is way over priced so there are few acquisitions that are worth it. A decade of near zero interest rates from the FED and the transition from traditional retirement plans have made it worse. That is what is really driving all the stock buy backs, there isn't another outlet for that cash.

Buffet wouldn't be in that 70% AOC bracket, his salary is $100k a year. Buffet's $100 billion estate won't see a penny of taxation, that is something else that should be addressed.
Plus, while Buffet was advocating for higher tax rates, Berkshire Hathaway was in the hole for back taxes.
 
Jul 2011
55,809
10,886
NYC/Москва
#18
Poor Warren. Must suck to be him.


Warren Buffett Can’t Find Anything Big to Buy

This is why so many people are saying why the fuck not tax billionaires at 70%. This man has 100 billion in cash laying around and he can't find anything to spend it on. Meanwhile average Americans are 3 or more months behind in their car payments and don't have $400 in the bank for an emergency.

It's sickening.


No one is stopping that asshole from simply writing a check to the treasury. Heck we all could start a grass roots campaign to get these ultra rich liberals to pony up with a check to the IRS!

are you down?
 
Likes: publius3
Feb 2011
16,489
5,756
Boise, ID
#19
No one is stopping that asshole from simply writing a check to the treasury. Heck we all could start a grass roots campaign to get these ultra rich liberals to pony up with a check to the IRS!

are you down?
On that note, here's a question with a funny answer:

Q: If Warren Buffett wanted to match all voluntary contributions to the Bureau of Public Debt that have been made by all individuals since 1996, how much of his net worth would he need to liquidate and send over?

A: 0.065%. Buffet could liquidate 0.0652% of his net worth and send it the Bureau of Public Debt and that amount would exceed the total cumulative contributions from all individuals since 1996.

So someone worth tens of billions of dollars who has pledged to give 99% of it to charity and allegedly thinks more of the rich's money should be sent to the federal government has never actually been willing to contribute even less than a tenth of 1% of his wealth to the Bureau of Public Debt. It would be extremely easy and inconsequential for him to make a donation that would dwarf a quarter century's worth of contributions by all individuals, but he doesn't do that.

This tells us that, regardless of what he alleges, he ultimately solidly believes that private investment is better overall for the country and economy than paying more federal taxes.
 

Blueneck

Former Staff
Jun 2007
53,420
39,689
Ohio
#20
Plus, while Buffet was advocating for higher tax rates, Berkshire Hathaway was in the hole for back taxes.
Not surprised. Many of those with off the charts wealth lie about stuff like that. The only reason they donate to charities is just PR, too. I'm sure most of them could care less about anything other than their own bottom line.
 

Similar Discussions