Has Warren Buffett run out of long-run? The stars aligned and Warren Buffett issued an annual shareholder letter that was forced to include an embarrassing charge for significant losses on Berkshire Hathaway’s investment in Kraft Heinz. Buffett’s letter was a rant against GAAP, and a 180 degree turn from his typical long-term focus. I was in New York […]
Update: The PCAOB is investigating PwC for its tax avoidance advice to Caterpillar, the Wall Street Journal is reporting. One down, more than 100+ PwC audit clients advised via Luxembourg to go…
This compilation covers the period from April 4 – when the David Sokol scandal hit – to May 3, 2011 when I attended the Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting in Omaha, Nebraska.
Like a lot of things Buffett and Berkshire, there’s more to the Swiss Re dispute resolution story than the snappy repartee tells you.
The next time something goes terribly wrong at a Berkshire Hathaway company, there’s a strong possibility no one will hear about it. Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger won’t be held directly responsible either. That’s the beauty of Buffett’s version of a conglomerate corporate structure, decentralized to such an obscene level such that its minimalism is brandished as a feature not a bug.
John Carney, who runs the NetNet Blog at CNBC, wrote a column last week highlighting mine at Forbes.com on Bank of America and Warren Buffet. He picked my comments on PricewaterhouseCoopers, Bank of America’s auditor, to highlight.
Warren Buffett’s investment in Bank of America was big news yesterday and it still reverberating. Forget the “Buffett effect.” I am now enjoying the “front page of Forbes.com” effect. Within an hour of posting it yesterday the story had over 3,000 page views. It is now my number one highest traffic post for my column there.
Ok, so it’s not a quote. And they don’t even mention my name. But indulge me a minute. I’m thrilled to have been linked to by American Lawyer’s Amy Kolz in the AmLawDaily Blog regarding the Berkshire Hathaway investigation of the Sokol affair.
The Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting draws a huge crowd because it features several hours of the wit and wisdom of Berkshire Hathaway CEO and Chairman Warren Buffett and his friend and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger. To say that Buffett, Munger, and Berkshire Hathaway have a cult-like following would be a a significant understatement. I attended the meeting and here’s my report.
Stanford University Graduate School of Business Professor David Larcker and his research associate, Brian Tayan, have developed a case study on the recent David Sokol – Berkshire Hathaway corporate governance slip-up. They emphasize, “The success of this system is predicated on the expectation that Berkshire Hathaway managers operate with high levels of integrity.” I don’t think Berkshire Hathaway’s leadership defines corporate governance the way everyone thinks they do. The bigger question is: Should that matter to their investors or anyone else?
On the way to writing this story, I realized some disturbing things about Berkshire Hathaway and how Buffet runs it. So anxious are some to annoint gurus, sages, and oracles, that they overlook some of the worst corporate governance practices I have ever seen. And Buffett’s Berkshire doesn’t like to be told how to do its accounting, either. I’m writing about that next for Forbes.
Moody’s latest 8-K announces the dismissal of PwC and hiring of KPMG as their auditors. What happened there? As noted in my previous post, the relationships between the rating agencies, monoline providers and Big 4 are tight. As we know, Moody’s had little choice if there was an issue, which we know there was regardless […]