The Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporate America Paperback – Apr 14 2008
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Buffett, the Bard of Omaha, is a genuine American folk hero, if folk heroes are allowed to build fortunes worth upward of $15 billion. He's great at homespun metaphor, but behind those catchy phrases is a reservoir of financial acumen that's generally considered the best of his generation. For example, in an essay on CEO stock options, he writes, "Negotiating with one's self seldom produces a barroom brawl." This is his way of saying that an executive who can give himself compensation totally disproportionate to his performance surely will. There are uncountable gems of financial wisdom to be harvested from these essays, taken from the annual reports he writes for Berkshire Hathaway, his holding company. Just to pick one more, here's a now-famous line about those he competes with when making stock-market investments: "What could be more advantageous in an intellectual contest--whether it be chess, bridge, or stock selection--than to have opponents who have been taught that thinking is a waste of energy?"
While Buffett has a policy of seldom commenting on stocks he owns--he feels public pronouncements will only lead to the public's expectation of more public pronouncements, and he likes to keep his cards close to his vest--he loves to discuss the principles behind his investments. These come primarily from Ben Graham, under whom Buffett studied at Columbia University and for whom he worked in the 1950s. First among them is the idea that price is what you pay and value is what you get--and if you're a smart investor, the first will always be less than the second. In that sense, the value of the lessons learned from Buffett's Essays could be far greater than the book's price. --Lou Schuler --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
From the Author
"I originally prepared this collection as the centerpiece of a symposium featuring Warren Buffett's letters. Warren, Charlie Munger, Bob Denham, and hundreds of others participated in dissecting all the ideas. This arrangement, organized by subject matter, contains a more valuable set of lessons than can be found at just about any school, library, business, or other place of learning. Anyone even remotely interested in business or finance or corporate life should read and study this collection and have a copy available for handy reference." --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.See all Product Description
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This is the Third Edition of an ongoing process by which Warren Buffett presents a "chairman's letter" (i.e. progress report with his unique reflections) to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders at their annual meeting. Lawrence A. Cunningham edited each of the three editions, with the latest including Buffett's annual letters to Berkshire shareholders since 2008, the date of the prior edition. Other new material includes:
o The financial crisis and its continuing implications for investors, managers and society;
o The housing bubble at the bottom of that crisis
o The debt and derivatives excesses that fueled the crisis and how to deal with them
o Controlling risk and protecting reputation in corporate governance
o Berkshire's acquisition and operation of Burlington Northern Santa Fe
o The role of oversight in heavily regulated industries
o Investment possibilities today
o Weaknesses of popular option valuation models
Some other material has been rearranged to deepen the themes and lessons that the collection has always produced:
o Buffett's "owner-related business principles" are in the prologue as a separate subject
o Valuation and accounting topics are spread over four instead of two sections and reordered to sharpen their payoff.
According to Cunningham, "Those who are familiar with The Essays will notice that we have made the cover snappier than has been our custom. (Thanks for the cover design to Tim Colton, of Carolina Academic Press, which will continue to partner with me in the distribution of the book.Read more ›
Moreover, Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway is nearly unique in its intense commitment to shareholders. The opposite (a commitment to management entrenchment and exorbitant compensation) is the norm with so many companies today that it would be easy to forget how vital shareholder primacy should be.Read more ›
(Read other books like, The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham, Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits by Philip A. Fisher, The Five Rules for Successful Stock Investing by Pat Dorsey and you sure will be ahead of the crowd)
Most recent customer reviews
The book present a completely different view from what been learn in school. A good reference book for all student in finance and accountingPublished 10 months ago by kim anh le
This is a fantastic collection of Warren Buffett 's writings, providing an in depth tutorial on corporate finance, management, and investing.Published on Nov. 20 2013 by Yves
I have not yet been able to read the essays as I have been quite busy.The provider of the essays sent it in timely fashion and they came in very good conditionPublished on Nov. 9 2013 by oogie
This is the Third Edition of an ongoing process by which Warren Buffett presents a "chairman's letter" (i.e. Read morePublished on March 27 2013 by Robert Morris
Warren Buffett never disapoints, and neither have his letters to shareholders. Only Warren Buffett can explain the most difficult things in the world of high finance and make them... Read morePublished on Nov. 25 2012 by Gary
The Essays of Warren Buffett is a collection of letters written by Warren Buffett to the Berkshire Hathaway shareholders and selected and edited by Lawrence Cunningham. Read morePublished on March 30 2008 by Amazon Customer
I have been talking to Professor Cunningham and apparently, this book is not "out of print" as amazon states (Third party private sellers are selling the book for as much... Read morePublished on July 13 2004 by Buan Pong Chua