Buffett Watch

Warren Buffett's Dare to Rupert Murdoch: Let's Both Release Our Tax Returns

Rupert Murdoch

Warren Buffett has a challenge for News Corp chief Rupert Murdoch:  I'll release my tax return if you release your return at the same time.

It's his not all that serious response to a question about last week's Wall Street Journal editorial headlined "Mr. Buffett's Tax Secrets." (Subscription required)

It called on Buffett to open up his tax return to support his now-famous argument that his secretary pays a higher tax ratethan he does. 

At Fortune's "Most Powerful Women Summit" today in California, Carol Loomis asked him about it.

According to Fortune's transcript of the full conversation, here's how it went:

CAROL LOOMIS:  Well, one of the centers of criticism has been the Wall Street Journal's editorial page.

WARREN BUFFETT:  Oh, really?  (Laughter.)

CAROL LOOMIS:  And they've asked you to give them your income tax statement.


CAROL LOOMIS:  What do you think about that?

WARREN BUFFETT:  Well, I think it might be a terrific idea if they would just ask their boss, Rupert Murdoch, and he and I will meet at Fortune and we'll both give you our tax returns, and you can publish them.  (Applause.)

CAROL LOOMIS:  We like it.  We like it.  (Laughter.)

WARREN BUFFETT:  I'm ready tomorrow morning.

On the more serious side, Buffett also told Loomisall of Berkshire Hathaway's businesses are growing, except for those connected to the still-sluggish housing market.

In a separate on-camera interview with CNN Money, Buffett said he'd buy U.S. bank stocks now, explained his version of the "Buffett rule" that's generated so much criticism, and called President Obama's jobs plan "stimulus."

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