Buffett dishes on gold, China and the economy
The legendary investor sits down with CNBC for hours to share his opinions about the financial world.
That's a no-brainer for Warren Buffett, who likes investments that produce and deliver returns. With gold, he told CNBC today, all you can do is hold on to it and hope that people become more afraid.
All the gold in the world is worth about $7 trillion, he said on CNBC. You can take that same chunk of change and buy seven Exxon Mobils (XOM) and still have trillions left in "walking-around money," he said. "The problem with commodities is you're betting on what someone will pay for them in six months," he added.
We have lots of videos of Buffett speaking about his investment strategy, his likes and dislikes, and about how he just lost an acquisition to another suitor. The videos will start playing below -- or, you can click here to specifically catch Buffett's take on gold vs. Exxon Mobil.
Post continues after video:
Here's a rundown of some of the other Buffett videos that came out of the extended interview:
On the economy. America gets off the track from time to time, Buffett said, and that was particularly true in the fall of 2008. But you cant stop this country, which has survived more than a dozen depressions of some sort.
"It'll sputter from time to time in the future, but you don't want to get too concerned about it," he said. "We have great soil for this country, metaphorically. It works over time." The railroad business is about 60% of the way back from the bottom, Buffett said. His company, Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B), spent $34 billion on railroad giant Burlington Northern Santa Fe in 2009. Click here to see the video.
On China. China will grow faster than the U.S. is growing because China comes from a lower base, Buffett said. The U.S. cannot grow at the same rate as China.
"We ought to be happy that they're doing well," he said. "It's not a zero-sum game in the world. We do not want to be an island of prosperity among 7 billion people." But expect to see America's overwhelming dominance in the world diminish. Click here to see the video.
On the auto industry. Americans haven't lost their love affair with cars, Buffett said. People want to buy more cars, and the economy is coming back. There is an expected number of cars on the road for the American population, he said. We fell below that number recently but now we're coming back. Click here to see the video.
On schmoozing. Sucking up to Berkshire investors is not important, Buffett said. "What you want is people that understand you and your business and what you're about," he added. "The idea of trying to cultivate new people all the time, you know there's only so many seats in the church." Click here to see the video.
On insider trading. There's a fair amount of trading on inside information in Wall Street, Buffett said. "You can't make a deal without a certain number of people hearing about it," he added. That's why he keeps Berkshire acquisitions very quiet and he likes to get them done fast.
Buffett said he doesn't even tell his board of directors much about an acquisition until it happens. "I'm paranoid about the idea that if we have 20 people that know about something, one of them is going to tell somebody." Click here to see the video.
On railroads. Buffett has only visited the offices of Burlington Northern once since Berkshire bought it. Over the last year, he said, he is more appreciative of the competitive advantages of the rail industry versus a sector like trucking. Click here to see the video.
On electric cars. Buffett has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in BYD, the Chinese battery company that is looking at ways to power electric cars. Battery technology is an evolving and tough game, he said. "There are a lot of smart people working on battery technology." BYD lost more than 60% from its peak. Click here to see the video.
What I'm hearing is a lot of envy and sour grapes. WB looks at industries and opportunities and selects companies that can be bought cheap(er) (remember buy low sell high?) and he is very good at it. Starting with a bankrupt company called Berkshire he has bought companies where he saw value and committed to turning them around often with the same management and employees.
Sorry you didn't buy BRK.B or BRK.A and other people did and stayed with it for great returns? Go find another shoulder to cry on for your lack of foresight.
tis not wise to tug on the whiskers of one who controls more money than you. he may swat at you and miss, but the draft will give you a concussion you will long remember. Bernanke and all of DC are but the puppets, and they DO protect their masters. Cutting the strings only means dead puppets.
Of course the game is rigged, if it weren't, why would they bother to play?
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