Money

Warren Buffett once bought Bill Gates lunch at McDonald's with coupons

Longtime friends Warren Buffett and Bill Gates
Spencer Platt | Getty Images
Longtime friends Warren Buffett and Bill Gates

Warren Buffett is the third richest man in the world, with an estimated net worth of $75 billion. But the Oracle of Omaha still values a good deal.

In Bill and Melinda Gates' 2017 annual letter, which they addressed to longtime friend Buffett, Bill tells the story of a particularly economical lunch Buffett took him out for years ago.

"Remember the laugh we had when we traveled together to Hong Kong and decided to get lunch at McDonald's? You offered to pay, dug into your pocket, and pulled out … coupons!" writes Bill.

Buffett is a regular at McDonald's. On his five-minute drive to the office, which he's been doing for the past 54 years, he stops by the fast-food chain and, depending on how prosperous he's feeling, orders one of three items: two sausage patties for $2.61, a sausage, egg and cheese for $2.95 or a bacon, egg and cheese for $3.17.

He's not just thrifty when it comes to meals. The billionaire lives in the same home he bought in 1958 for $31,500, or about $260,000 in today's dollars.

Buffett is perfectly content being cheap. "My life couldn't be happier," he explained at his annual shareholder's meeting in 2014. "In fact, it'd be worse if I had six or eight houses. So, I have everything I need to have, and I don't need any more."

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