There was a one hour interview on CNBC with Warren Buffet, the third richest man in the world who has donated $37 billion to charity. (The richest now is Carlos Slim and Bill Gates is the second richest.) Here are some very interesting aspects of his life:
1. He bought his first share of stock at age 11 and he now regrets that he started too late!
2. He bought a small farm at age 14 with savings from delivering newspapers.
3. He still lives in the same, small 3-bedroom house in midtown Omaha that he bought after he got married 50 years ago. He says that he has everything he needs in that house. His house does not have a wall around it nor a fence.
4. He drives his own car everywhere and does not have a driver or security people around him.
5. He never travels by private jet, although he owns the world’s largest private jet company.
6. His company, Berkshire Hathaway, owns 63 companies. He writes only one letter each year to the CEOs of these companies, giving them goals for the year. He never holds meetings or calls them on a regular basis. He has given his CEO’s only two rules. Rule number 1: Do not lose any of your shareholder’s money. Rule number 2: Do not forget rule number 1.
7. He does not socialize with the high society crowd. His pastime after he gets home is to make himself some popcorn and watch television.
8. Bill Gates, the world’s richest man, met him for the first time only 5 years ago. Bill Gates did not think he had anything in common with Warren Buffet (other than money!). So, he had scheduled his meeting only for half hour. But when Gates met him, the meeting lasted for ten hours and Bill Gates became a devotee of Warren Buffet.
9. Warren Buffet does not carry a cell phone, nor has a computer on his desk.
His advice to younger people:
Stay away from credit cards, Invest in yourself. He is prepared, however, and does so regularly, to outline general principles of sound investment. These have a consistent theme and can be summed up like this.
A. Money doesn’t create man, but it is the man who created money.
B. Live your life as simple as you are.
C. Don’t do what others say. Just listen to them, but do what makes you feel good.
D. Don’t go on brand name. Wear those things in which you feel comfortable.
E. Don’t waste your money on unnecessary things. Spend on those who really are in need.
F. After all, it’s your life. Why give others the chance to rule your life.
G Never invest in a business you cannot understand.
H Always invest for the long term.
I Wall Street is the only place that people ride to in a Rolls-Royce to get advice from those who take the subway.
J If you’re doing something you love, you’re more likely to put your all into it, and that generally equates to making money.
K Most people get interested in stocks when everyone else is. The time to get interested is when no one else is. You can’t buy what is popular and do well.
L In the short run, the market is a voting machine but in the long run it is a weighing machine.’