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Berkshire Hathaway

Hewison travel to US for Berkshire Hathaway AGM

Glenn Fairbairn
Director/Private Client Adviser
9 May 2016

On Saturday 30 April my colleague Simon Curtain and I attended the Berkshire Hathaway Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Omaha, Nebraska, United States.  

Berkshire Hathaway is the global conglomerate and listed investment company of investment guru, Warren Buffet, and his business partner and “sidekick,” Charlie Munger. It has had long term holdings in Coca Cola, IBM, Wells Fargo, American Express as well as many companies that are not widely recognised. It’s annual portfolio growth has averaged an impressive 20 per cent over its 51-year history.

Berkshire Hathaway’s AGMs, nicknamed “Woodstock for Capitalists” attract more than 20,000 people annually, and its 50-year anniversary in 2015 attracted more than 40,000 people.

I am pleased to share some of the most memorable quotes from the day, which I believe our clients’ will find both helpful and amusing:

  • “When you buy a stock, get in the mental state that you would own the whole business. Think about what you would pay for the whole business. Do not get into the stupid game of trading stocks just because the option is available. If you buy a farm you do not value it every day.”– Warren Buffett.
  • [On Donald Trump winning the Presidential election] “The impact on Berkshire Hathaway won’t be the main problem. Berkshire will continue to do well regardless of the presidential outcome. Business has done well of hundreds of years and has adapts to the political landscape.” – Warren Buffett.
  • “Microeconomics is what we do, macroeconomics is what we have to deal with.” – Charlie Munger.
  • “You don’t have to really worry about what’s really going on in IPOs. People win lotteries every day.” – Warren Buffett.
  • “When it comes to investing, you need more emotional control that IQ” – Warren Buffett.

And a couple that showed off both Buffett’s and Munger’s sense of humour:

  • “A full wallet is like a full bladder, eventually you get the urge to pee it away.” – Warren Buffett.
  • On what qualities they look for in the leadership of companies they invest in-  “We look for three things: intelligence, energy, and integrity. If you don’t have the latter, then you should hope they don’t have the first two either. If someone doesn’t have integrity, then you want them to be dumb and lazy.” – Warren Buffett.
  • “Charlie has pointed out that of the seven deadly sins, envy is the most useless, because you just make yourself miserable and can’t sleep. There’s real upside to gluttony – I’ve had some great times with gluttony. And we won’t get into lust.” – Warren Buffett.

For the first time ever, Berkshire Hathaway’s AGM was streamed live by Yahoo Finance. For those interested in learning more, click here

The information provided above is general information only and individuals should seek specialised advice from a qualified financial adviser. Please contact Hewison Private Wealth for more information. 


Hewison Private Wealth is a Melbourne based independent financial planning firm. Our financial advisers are highly qualified wealth managers and specialise in self managed super funds (SMSF), financial planning, retirement planning advice and investment portfolio management. If you would like to speak to a financial adviser on how you can secure your financial future please contact us 03 8548 4800, email info@hewison.com.au or visit www.hewison.com.auPlease note: The advice provided above is general information only and individuals should seek specialised advice from a qualified financial advisor. The views in this blog are those of the individual and may not represent the general opinion of the firm. Please contact Hewison Private Wealth for more information.