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Warren Buffett Watch

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  Monday, 7 Apr 2014 | 9:53 AM ET

Is Warren Buffett losing his touch?

Posted By: Jeff Sommer
Warren Buffett
Adam Jeffery | CNBC
Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett is probably the most famous investor of his generation, and for good reason: His track record over the long term is a thing of beauty.

He has beaten the market by a wide margin over 49 years, a record so impressive that it's used in finance classes as a textbook example of "alpha."

Alpha is an elusive quality. Very simply put, it is the ability to beat an index fund without adding risk to a portfolio. Investment managers are always seeking it. If it exists, Warren Buffett surely has had it.

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A new statistical analysis of Mr. Buffett's long-term record at Berkshire Hathaway has just been done, and it's come up with some fascinating insights about his abilities, past and present, and about the chances that the rest of us have for beating the market. Using a series of statistical measures, the study suggests that Mr. Buffett has indeed been blessed with an impressively big dose of alpha over a very long career.

But it also reveals something that isn't impressive at all: For four of the last five years, Mr. Buffett has been doing worse than the typical, no-frills Standard & Poor's 500-stock index fund — so much worse that it's unlikely to be a matter of a string of bad luck. Mr. Buffett has begun to behave like an investor with no alpha at all.

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  Wednesday, 2 Apr 2014 | 6:20 PM ET

Warren Buffett says you should tweet about these

Posted By: Alex Crippen

Warren Buffett, despite what it says in our attempt at irony in the headline, is no expert on social media.

In fact, he famously doesn't have a computer in his office and does not carry a smartphone. (He does use a computer at home to play online bridge with his friend Bill Gates and others.)

»Read more
  Tuesday, 1 Apr 2014 | 7:40 AM ET

Learning to give away money the Buffett way

Posted By: Alex Crippen

For the second consecutive year, Warren Buffett's sister, Doris, is offering a free online course on getting good value for the money you give away to charities.

Her Learning By Giving Foundation and Northwestern University are teaming up to present "Giving With Purpose: How to get the most out of your charitable giving" on EdX's MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) platform. EdX is a nonprofit initiative created by Harvard and MIT.

The class begins on Wednesday and lasts seven weeks. Registration is open to anyone over age 13. Students can expect to spend two to four hours a week if they participate in all the course activities.

»Read more
  Monday, 17 Mar 2014 | 11:58 AM ET

3 reasons 2008 crisis post-mortem shocked Buffett

3 Reasons: Buffett says Geithner's book sensational
A quick look at the day's top stories on Squawk Box, including Buffett's thoughts on former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner's new book, with CNBC's Becky Quick and Joe Kernen.

Warren Buffett said that when he called the 2008 financial crisis an "economic Pearl Harbor" the description was not "strong enough."

"I found some things that were going on behind the scenes that I did not know," the Oracle of Omaha revealed in a CNBC "Squawk Box" interview, after reading an advanced copy of former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner's new book.

Read more from Buffett's Friday appearance:

Buffett doesn't expect big stock drop
Buffett blasts bitcoin: 'Stay away!'
Buffett on $1 billion March Madness contest

»Read more
  Friday, 14 Mar 2014 | 9:24 AM ET

Buffett: I'd be 'surprised' if stock prices drop 50%

Posted By: Alex Crippen
Warren Buffett says 2008 crisis worse than he realized
Discussing the economic impact of China's slowing economy, the state of housing and the U.S. economy, with Warren Buffett, Berkshire Hathaway Chairman & CEO, and Dan Gilbert, Quicken Loans founder & Chairman.

Warren Buffett told CNBC on Friday he would be "surprised a lot" if stock prices around the world fell 50 percent from their current levels in the near future.

He predicted there will be another financial crisis "someday" in the years ahead that will shock financial markets, but he doesn't think it will happen anytime soon.

"Humans will behave in crazy ways, both on the upside and the downside in the next 50 years. It's very unlikely they do it in the next few years because after something like 2008, once they get out of the emergency room, they're a little more careful for awhile."

During an appearance on CNBC's "Squawk Box," Buffett told 58-year-old host Joe Kernen that he will live to see the Dow at 100,000. "I won't, but you will," the 83-year-old Berkshire Hathaway chairman said.

»Read more
  Friday, 14 Mar 2014 | 10:29 AM ET

Bitcoin? Here's what Warren Buffett is saying

Posted By: Alex Crippen
Buffett: Bitcoin a 'mirage'
Warren Buffett tells CNBC why he thinks bitcoins don't have any intrinsic value and investors should stay away.

Warren Buffett is no fan of bitcoin.

"Stay away from it. It's a mirage, basically," he said on CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Friday.

(Read more: Buffett: It would surprise me if stock prices drop 50%)

In response to a question about the cryptocurrency from Quicken Loans founder Dan Gilbert, Buffett said:

"It's a method of transmitting money. It's a very effective way of transmitting money and you can do it anonymously and all that. A check is a way of transmitting money, too. Are checks worth a whole lot of money just because they can transmit money? Are money orders? You can transmit money by money orders. People do it. I hope bitcoin becomes a better way of doing it, but you can replicate it a bunch of different ways and it will be. The idea that it has some huge intrinsic value is just a joke in my view."

»Read more
  Friday, 14 Mar 2014 | 9:31 AM ET

$1 billion Madness contest not just chance: Buffett

Picking the perfect bracket for $1 billion
Warren Buffett of Berkshire Hathaway is backing the Quicken Loans' $1 billion bracket challenge with Yahoo Sports. Buffett provides insight on the competition.

"I should be institutionalized," Warren Buffett joked on CNBC Friday—talking about how he's feeling about Berkshire Hathaway's part in insuring a contest by Quicken Loans to offer a billion dollars for the perfect March Madness bracket.

»Read more
  Wednesday, 12 Mar 2014 | 1:42 PM ET

Buffett's Berkshire gets its first TV station

Posted By: Alex Crippen

For the first time, Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway will directly own a television station.

Under terms of an agreement in principle announced Wednesday, Berkshire will get ABC-affiliate WPLG in Miami from Graham Holdings.

»Read more
  Monday, 3 Mar 2014 | 4:22 PM ET

CNBC Transcript: Warren Buffett on 'Squawk Box'

Posted By: Alex Crippen
Warren Buffett
Lacy O'Toole | CNBC
Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett was featured in a marathon live appearance on CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Monday.

Among the topics covered:

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  Monday, 3 Mar 2014 | 9:26 AM ET

Warren Buffett: Ukraine won't stop my stock buying

Posted By: Alex Crippen
Warren's wisdom: Don't hold money during a war
Warren Buffett, Berkshire Hathaway chairman & CEO, says he felt good when he saw a London stock he was interested in buying trading lower on the growing fears over Russian aggression in the Ukraine. One thing that you can be sure, if there is a war, the value of money would go down, says Buffett.

Warren Buffett said he's not at all discouraged that the stock market is under pressure due to the conflict in Ukraine.

In a live interview Monday on CNBC's "Squawk Box," Buffett said, "When I got up this morning, I actually looked at a stock on the computer (for) the trades in London (of a stock) that we're buying, and it's down and I felt good." He would only acknowledge it is an "English" stock.

"We were buying it on Friday, but it's cheaper this morning and that's good news." Will he buy more? "Absolutely."

Buffett said that would be true even if he knew Ukraine would turn into a major conflict.

»Read more

About Buffett Watch

  • Warren Buffett is arguably America’s most-admired and most-followed investor. Buffett is the largest shareholder and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway and one of the world’s most famous and most generous philanthropists. Legions of investors - from all walks of life - follow Buffett's homespun investment philosophy: invest in what you know, invest in value. Here on CNBC.com's Warren Buffett Watch, we’ll keep you up to date on what the “Oracle of Omaha” is doing by following Buffett's trades, words and deeds.

 

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Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 | 12:16 AM ET

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Wednesday, 23 Apr 2014 | 3:00 PM ET

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