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Warren Buffett and the Interpretation of Financial Statements: The Search for the Company with a Durable Competitive Advantage [Audiobook, CD, Unabridged] [Audio CD]

Mary Buffett , David Clark , Karen White
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Dec 8 2008
Mary Buffett and David Clark clearly outline Warren Buffett's strategies in a way that will appeal to newcomers and seasoned Buffettologists alike. Inspired by the seminal work of Buffett's mentor, Benjamin Graham (The Interpretation of Financial Statements, 1937), this book presents Buffett's interpretation of financial statements with anecdotes and quotes from the master investor himself.

Potential investors will discover:

—Buffett's time-tested dos and don'ts for interpreting an income statement and balance sheet

—Why high research and development costs can kill a great business

—How much debt Buffett thinks a company can carry before it becomes too dangerous to touch

—The financial ratios and calculations that Buffett uses to identify the company with a durable competitive advantage—which he believes makes for the winning long-term investment

—How Buffett uses financial statements to value a company

—What kinds of companies Warren stays away from no matter how cheap their selling price

Once audiences complete and master Buffett's simple financial calculations and methods for interpreting a company's financial statement, they will be well on their way to identifying which companies are going to be tomorrow's winners—and which will be the losers that should be avoided at all costs.

Destined to become a classic in the world of investment books, Warren Buffett and the Interpretation of Financial Statements is the perfect companion volume to The New Buffettology and The Tao of Warren Buffett.

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"Just as top musicians memorize scales, and the best golfers perfect swings at the driving range, investors who want sustainable, good returns must master the critical basics that Mary Buffett and David Clark lay out for us in this clear explanation of Warren Buffett's methods. I don't think there has been a better time for investors to relearn the fundamentals. Follow these methods and you will see results!" - Timothy P. Vick, senior portfolio manager, The Sanibel Captiva Trust Company, and author of How to Pick Stocks Like Warren Buffett --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

Mary Buffett's own business acumen can be measured by her success as CEO of Superior Assembly, a very successful commercial and motion picture editing company, with clients including Madonna and Coca-Cola. She lives in Southern California.

David Clark is a portfolio manager and a leading authority on Warren Buffett's investment methods.

Karen White has been narrating and directing audiobooks for more than a dozen years and has well over one hundred books to her credit. Honored to be included among AudioFile's Best Voices 2010 and 2011, she is also an Audie Award finalist and has earned multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards for narration and direction.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Written for pre-teens Feb. 25 2010
While the book provides a few useful rules-of-thumb (which could be gleaned in the time it takes to have a cup of coffee), it's written in such a dumbed-down way as to prove annoying beyond belief.
The book's "chapters" are drawn from the line items on the income statement and balance sheet -- sample revelation: "Chapter 40: Long Term Debt: Something that great companies don't have a lot of". If you need to know that, you might want to avoid picking your own stocks and buy an ETF.
The average length of each chapter is 2-3 pages. Some merely say that the line item is not important for measuring the long-term competitive advantage of a company.
More annoying is the authors' use of glib, familiar phrases like "what makes Warren superrich", and the glib, cutesy wrap sentences that end each chapter. Check a few chapter endings out on-line or in store.
This book might be good for a Grade 9 intro to investing or accounting class, but anyone else would be better off with something more substantive. I like Graham's Intelligent Investor which is an enjoyable read but goes into great depth.
J Carson
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Not only was the book brief and concise, it's also written in such a simple language that even an amateur can understand at the first glance. For the more advanced reader, or even the seasoned value investor, this book gives insight into Warren Buffett's "secret holy grail" to successful investing.

The basics of financial statements are briefly introduced, where the analysis of each of the three parts are structured neatly into small sections and chapters for the reader to understand more easily. Although it's not rocket science, these nuts and bolts of financial analysis can prove to be quite challenging for a beginner in accounting. Where appropriate, the book also clearly distinguishes Buffett's different views and arguments with traditional Graham-based value investors, which make this book an overall great book for both beginners and experts alike.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great Tools for Reading Financial Reports Nov. 2 2010
If you want to handle your own investments, you gotta pick this us. It's not just a primer on finances, or how to cut the credit cards, but a primer on how the big money guys look at stocks. This is exactly what I wanted. The Inside dish.

Every day former Fund Manager Jim Cramer comes on TV and tells the world how to trade and invest. His credo isn't ' buy and hold' but 'buy and homework'. That is, you don't buy stocks then forget about them; you check in on them on a weekly basis. This book is the answer to the question: ' What does it mean to 'check on' them?'

If that's what you're looking for, this book is terrific. It's a quick read, and they break down the Financial dry-as-cardboard stuff into simple language anyone can understand. What I was really looking for from this was a set of rules, a set of 'if/then' guidelines to consider when reading financial reports. Again, Cardboard. What a lot of guys do is make a 'Shopping List' of great stocks you want to own, as soon as the price comes down.

The first part: identifying great companies, that's what Buffett can help you with. He explains what exactly he's looking at when he sees Microsoft's or Hershey's financial statements. Buffett is looking for not just 'good' companies, he's looking for companies that have pseudo-monopolies. He calls them 'moats' (like a castle) when a company has protection from competition, something like a patent, or a powerful brandname, that means it keeps raking in the dough year after year after year, even without much in the way of 'new products'!

The second part: buying at the right price. He touches on that as well. For that you just need to know the historical prices and have patience that, in time, you'll get your opening.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book Sept. 8 2009
Great book. Really lets you understand financial statements that companies put out every quarter. I wouldnt say this book lets you pick winners but it lets you understand the money matters of a company.

I have 10 years experience with the stock market but always looking for new theories and ideas.

I took the information from this book and made up a formula to pick undervalued companies by their balance sheets. I turned my $5000 TFSA into $9400 today.
I recommend this book to anyone who has experience with stock market and wants to learn more.
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Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Borrowed this book from my brother, read it and decided it is a must have, keep & regularly refer to. Did not review and buy when available at COSTCO, was not available again, finally bought from AMAZON.

Excellent book, learn how to invest do your own analysis understand financial ratios & terms, be independant and make your own decisions. Income Statement, Balance Sheet & Cash Flow Statement explained line by line & how Warren Buffett analysis & invests.
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