In the above article published on line , The Guardian writes,
“The billionaire Warren Buffett, whose stock picks over several decades have turned Berkshire Hathaway into one of the most successful conglomerates in the world”
In the age of Trumpism, this may be called FAKE news. Warren Buffet did not turn Berkshire Hathaway into one of the most successful conglomerates in the world through his stock picks. Buffet built Berkshire Hathaway through a form of evergreen direct investing using a unique combination of insurance company policyholder premiums and public market equity.
Beginning in the early 1960s, Mr. Buffett built Berkshire Hathaway into a mutual fund style holding company through direct investments in a growing portfolio that now includes over 80 separate wholly-owned subsidiaries, each of which continues to be led by its own leadership, and none of which trades their shares directly in the public markets.
There is a public company component to the Berkshire Hathaway portfolio, and this portfolio has delivered solid long term performance, but the real genius of the Oracle of Omaha is not in stock picking. It is in direct investing in enterprise cash flows, directly. Read his annual letters. He doesn’t try to hide this fact.
There are important lessons that can be learned from Warren Buffett by pensions and endowments.
Imagine what the condition of our retirement provision would be, if the pension industry had, beginning in the early 1970s, followed Warren Buffett’s example, rather than trying to become good stock pickers.