James B. Stewart is the Pulitzer-Prize winning author and former Page-One editor at the Wall Street Journal responsible for two of the best business books I've ever read: Den of Thieves (1991) and DisneyWar (1995).
He's also a Warren Buffett fan, and his recent Smart Money column focuses on a Buffett theme we've touched on in the last few days: "Investors Should Heed Warren Buffett's Free Advice." Stewart says "Buffett has given away more free advice than just about any billionaire I can think of" .. both specific stock picks, and more importantly, his investment philosophy. "Anyone can piggy-back his actual stock selections or apply his criteria to come up with other investments."
Stewart takes the opportunity to highlight his own recent success at applying the "Buffett philosophy." In a column back in March, Stewart came up with two stocks he thought would "fit Buffett to a T": Deere and Caterpillar.
Since then, Deere is up 12% and Caterpillar is up 23%. While Stewart calls his performance "not bad" he notes he hasn't been "summoned" to Omaha (yet) for an interview to be Berkshire Hathaway's next chief investment officer .. nor has he even been invited for dinner. After all, as Stewart points out, people pay big money to share a meal with the O-of-O, providing another gauge of just how successful Buffett has been and why we should all listen to what he has to say.
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