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Warren Buffett Explains Why Fear Overshadows Greed

Warren Buffett
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Warren Buffett

It's a good time to remember one of Warren Buffett's classic rules: "Be fearful when others are greedy, and be greedy when others are fearful."

With so much fear in the financial markets right now, it's not a surprise that Buffett is being greedy.

He reminds Fortune's Andy Serwer that "the lower things go, the more I buy. We are in the business of buying." (He, of course, won't say exactly what he's buying.)

Buffett often makes a comparison to the price of hamburgers at McDonalds. If the price tag is reduced he doesn't get worried, he buys more and feels good that he's paying less for the same hamburger than it would have cost him the day before.

He acknowledges, however, that overcoming fear is easier said than done. "There is no comparison between fear and greed. Fear is instant, pervasive and intense. Greed is slower. Fear hits."

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