America loves Berkshire Hathaway

Warren Buffett's investment company takes No. 1 in Harris Interactive's annual ranking of companies with the best reputations.

By TheStreet Staff Apr 6, 2010 12:10PM

TheStreetBy Eric Rosenbaum, TheStreet

 

Americans hated companies a little less in 2009 than they did in 2008, but the country loved Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B) a bit more.

 

In Harris Interactive's annual ranking of the companies with the best reputations, 81% of survey respondents said they considered the business world's reputation "not good" or "terrible," down from 88% the previous year.

 

Berkshire Hathaway beat second-place Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) for the top spot among the 60 companies in the ranking. Google (GOOG), 3M (MMM) and SC Johnson rounded out the top five. Privately held SC Johnson was the first company to debut in the top five in the ranking since Google in 2005.

 

The biggest jump was made by Ford (F). The carmaker jumped 11 places in the ranking, the second-largest increase in a single year in the poll's history.

 

Find a new broker and start trading today

 

Respondents didn’t view the other big automakers as fondly, though: Chrysler and General Motors ranked among the 10 worst. The two were among the nine companies in the bottom 10 that received government bailouts.

 

Freddie Mac ranked last, replacing American International Group (AIG), which finished second-to-last. Freddie Mac had never been among the 60 most visible companies in America before its debut this year. Freddie Mac and AIG were joined by Fannie Mae as the only companies with a reputation score lower than 50. Freddie Mac's score was the lowest since Enron in 2005.

 

Another debut among the worst of the lot was Goldman Sachs (GS), which scored barely above 50. Other low-ranking companies included Delta Air Lines (DAL), Bank of America (BAC), JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and Citigroup (C).

 

Poll respondents typically had unfavorable views. Negative sentiment spiked at 88% in 2008 after dropping to a low of 68% in 2002.

 

The encouraging news for corporate America may be that there was a 50% increase in the number of Americans who said that the state of business reputation was "good," moving from 12% to 18%. It was the first increase in four years, according to Harris Interactive.

 

Companies with the best reputations:

 

1. Berkshire Hathaway

 

2. Johnson & Johnson

 

3. Google

 

4. 3M

 

5. SC Johnson

 

6. Intel (INTC)

 

7. Microsoft (MSFT)

 

8. Coca-Cola (KO)

 

9. Amazon (AMZN)

 

10. General Mills (GIS)

 

Companies with the worst reputations:

 

1. Freddie Mac

 

2. AIG

 

3. Fannie Mae

 

4. Citigroup

 

5. Goldman Sachs

 

6. Chrysler

 

7. General Motors

 

8. JPMorgan Chase

 

9. Bank of America

 

10. Delta Air Lines

 

Related Articles

 

Three turnaround stocks with fat yields

 

Alcoa rise aluminum prices to profit

 

New Yorkers outspent by Austin residents

 

2Comments
Report
Please help us to maintain a healthy and vibrant community by reporting any illegal or inappropriate behavior. If you believe a message violates theCode of Conductplease use this form to notify the moderators. They will investigate your report and take appropriate action. If necessary, they report all illegal activity to the proper authorities.
Categories
100 character limit
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?

DATA PROVIDERS

Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.

STOCK SCOUTER

StockScouter rates stocks from 1 to 10, with 10 being the best, using a system of advanced mathematics to determine a stock's expected risk and return. Ratings are displayed on a bell curve, meaning there will be fewer ratings of 1 and 10 and far more of 4 through 7.

105
105 rated 1
271
271 rated 2
420
420 rated 3
633
633 rated 4
492
492 rated 5
532
532 rated 6
725
725 rated 7
515
515 rated 8
343
343 rated 9
140
140 rated 10
12345678910

Top Picks

SYMBOLNAMERATING
UPLULTRA PETROLEUM Corp10
EOGEOG RESOURCES Inc10
SWNSOUTHWESTERN ENERGY COMPANY10
TAT&T Inc9
COPCONOCOPHILLIPS9
More

VIDEO ON MSN MONEY

ABOUT

Top Stocks provides analysis about the most noteworthy stocks in the market each day, combining some of the best content from around the MSN Money site and the rest of the Web.

Contributors include professional investors and journalists affiliated with MSN Money.

Follow us on Twitter @topstocksmsn.