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Berkshire Hathaway Letters to Shareholders, 2012 Paperback

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 730 pages
  • Publisher: Max Olson; 1 edition (April 25, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595910778
  • ISBN-13: 978-1595910776
  • Product Dimensions: 10.8 x 8.3 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #54,603 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Warren Edward Buffett (born August 30, 1930) is an American business magnate, investor, and philanthropist. He is widely considered the most successful investor of the 20th century. Buffett is the primary shareholder, chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway and consistently ranked among the world's wealthiest people. He was ranked as the world's wealthiest person in 2008 and as the third wealthiest person in 2011. In 2012, American magazine Time named Buffett one of the most influential people in the world. Buffett is called the "Wizard of Omaha", "Oracle of Omaha", or the "Sage of Omaha" and is noted for his adherence to the value investing philosophy and for his personal frugality despite his immense wealth. Buffett is also a notable philanthropist, having pledged to give away 99 percent of his fortune to philanthropic causes, primarily via the Gates Foundation.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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It' also a great bathroom book - you don't have to read it all at once.
I've read through 2004 but can tell this will have tremendous influence on my investment decision making.
David Crosswy
This is a fantastic collection of Mr. Buffett's letters to shareholders.
David Collon

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

59 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Marcelo P. Lima on May 1, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When I started learning about Warren Buffett, one of the first things I did was buy a printer that could print on both sides of the page. I got a ream of three hole paper, and filled a few binders with Buffett's letters to investors, all of which are freely available on his website.

I spent several months going through the letters in chronological order, and how amazing they were! They taught everything from accounting to investing, critical thinking, economics, business, and served as a reminder that business and market cycles ebb and flow.

I got into the habit of telling -- to whomever cared to listen -- that these letters, properly read and understood, were likely the best MBA course one could possibly take (particularly considering the price!).

Well, now they have been helpfully compiled by my friend Max Olson. This edition includes charts I haven't seen anywhere else, showing Berkshire's cost of float (to the uninitiated: Buffett has borrowed money more cheaply than the U.S. government over the years, and used this fuel to invest at incredible rates of return), a chronological list of acquisitions, and even includes a topic index.

Kudos to Olson and Buffett for making this public. Now it's up to you, the reader, to make the best of it.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Cancan on June 8, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a Buffett disciple. His investing philosophy is grounded in common sense, is simple and elegant, and his track record proves it works over long periods of time.

You will not learn any magic formulas or short-cuts in his letters. What you will learn is how to think about businesses and investing. You will learn that investing is more of an art than a science. You will learn that temperament is critical to your investing success. You will get a history lesson, and see how a great investor thought about situations in the past. You will learn the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Reading Buffett's shareholder letters is the best practical investment education available. Buffett has mentioned in the past that he spends considerable amounts of time crafting his shareholder letters, and it shows. Hiis ideas and thoughts come across the page in a crystal clear manner.

I also like the Lawrence Cunningham book, The Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporate America. Cunningham's book takes selected sections out of past letters and groups them by subject, which is very handy. This book includes the letters in their entirety from 1965 to present. It has a convenient topics index in the front of the book so you can quickly find where Buffett discussed moats, Mr. Market, risk, etc...

I have been an Amazon (talk about a moat!) customer for close to 15 years now. I pretty much do all my shopping here, I have purchased hundreds of items over the years. This is the first product I have felt compelled to write a review for. I think this book belongs on every thinking investor and business person's book shelf. I hope the creators of this book will likewise make one of the older Buffett Partnership letters. There are many great insights to be found there as well.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Geoffrey J Graham on September 11, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

This question is for Max Olson now that I've purchased. Will you use the Amazon Whispersync Automatic Book Update to append future Annual letter to this e-book? That is, when Warren Buffett releases the 2013 letter. Will this be auto-added?


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17 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Don on May 9, 2013
Format: Paperback
Warren Buffett is a legend in the investing world. He's been called "The World's Most Successful Investor" for good reason. Currently the world's second richest man, with a net worth exceeding $40 billion dollars, his fortune has been built almost exclusively through business acquisition, both entire companies and equity positions. Buffett started as a disciple of value investing legend Ben Graham, the author of The Intelligent Investor, which Buffett has called the best book on investing ever written. He formed several partnerships in the late 1950's, and in the mid-1960's acquired New England textile manufacturer Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-B). Eventually, he and his partner Charlie Munger morphed Berkshire into an investment vehicle, acquiring excellent businesses like See's Candy and GEICO insurance as well as stock positions in large companies like Coca-Cola (KO) and Gillette (PG), among others.

Every year, Buffett personally pens an annual letter to shareholders in which he reviews Berkshire's results, opines on current events, and drops interesting stories and thoughts that expose his and Munger's incredibly successful investment strategies. The real gems in these annual letters are Buffett's thoughts on business and investing. Max Olson recognized this, and has compiled Buffett's notes and organized parts of them by topic. Berkshire Hathaway Letters to Shareholders is simply that - straight from the hand of Warren Buffett, but organized in a cohesive manner, with wisdom from several years put together by topic.

The result is outstanding. Here are just some nuggets of wisdom, nearly all with real-world examples:

On Choosing Businesses to Invest In: Buffett, in several examples, lays out Berkshire's investment criteria.
Read more ›
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