Top positive review
11 people found this helpful
Interesting and informative
on August 27, 2010
I read Buffett's Bites as a non-professional investor in mutual funds, as someone who wanted to learn something about how Warren Buffett became the second richest man in the US. This little book helped me to understand Mr. Buffett's methods for making money with Berkshire Hathaway, without having to read a long financial biography, and it educated me on the subject of making investments in general.
The author is president of Rittenhouse Rankings, Inc., a company which works with corporate leaders to improve their communication with their shareholders. She finds Warren Buffett's annual letters to his shareholders exemplary for their good explanations and their candor.
She has selected quotes from Mr. Buffett's shareholder letters since 2005 and added her comments, explanations and analogies. There are 25 of these "bites" from Mr. Buffett. Although some of them seem redundant, I learned a lot about Berkshire Hathaway from reading all 25 of the bites. However, a small-potatoes investor might not be able to use many of the tips directly for his/her own investing. How does a harried public school teacher, or a health worker or retail salesperson "find CEO's who treasure cash," or "find CEO's who pick outstanding managers," or "find disciplined CEO's who maintain float"? The small bites of Mr. Buffett's wisdom are really short insights into what he and his expert staff presumably do all day in their Omaha office.
Some of the bites chosen by the author are reassuringly straightforward, such as "buy quality merchandise [shares] when it's [they're] marked down," and "ignore sound bites that rattle markets." She and Mr. Buffett remind us that we're all in the same investors' boat and that the history of the 20th century includes plenty of downhill slides from which the US economy rebounded, but we may have to be patient and avoid "casino capitalism."
If you are curious about Berkshire Hathaway and realistic enough to avoid books with plans promising that one can "get rich now with these tips", this is a good book. I think it should be called, "How Warren Buffett Used Plain Old Honest American Principles to Become Amazingly Rich and Take a Lot of Shareholders Along with Him", and I recommend it to folks who would like to read non-technical material about the world of investments.
retired high school teacher