Buffett cuts stake in IBM and shares slide

Warren Buffett

The so-called Woodstock of Capitalism has begun.

But he acknowledged disliking imposing the kinds of deep cuts, including the loss of many thousands of jobs, for which 3G is known. Buffett often spends several minutes explaining complex topics in plain terms before Munger cuts to the heart of a topic in a few words. "We'll find out whether I'm right or wrong on the second". "The CEO has to act", Buffett said. The scandal has spurred millions of dollars in fines and legal costs and dented Wells Fargo's standing as one of the country's best run banks.

Buffett, who had backed Hillary Clinton in last year's U.S. election, did not directly criticize Trump at the meeting.

He was joined at the traditional newspaper tossing contest by friends including Microsoft Corp co-founder and Berkshire director Bill Gates, and Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh.

He began the meeting by responding to questions about Wells Fargo's fake accounts scandal with strong criticism for how the bank handled the situation, saying it was a "huge, huge, huge error" if the company ignored calls from employees reporting misconduct. It's the company's largest holding. "The main problem was they didn't act". Buffett said Berkshire's Geico unit was an early customer of Google, paying the search-engine company when people clicked on the auto insurer's ads.

Also important to note, Berkshire's current investors are fine with the absence of earnings conference calls under Buffett's leadership, but that could change in the future.

The main focus of the meeting is the question-and-answer session, during which the 86-year-old billionaire and his 93-year-old partner, Charlie Munger, take questions from financial journalists, analysts and shareholders, ranging from Berkshire's business, the stock market, the economic outlook to the investment philosophy.

Some rivers receding, but Mississippi River remains high
Among them are Route 30 or Gravois at the Meramec River and Route 47 from the Missouri River Bridge in Washington to Marthasville. The governor declared a state of emergency Monday after more than a week of severe storms, flooding and tornadoes.

If Berkshire does decide to pay dividends, it would have to commit to maintaining that payout over time, Buffett said, as cutting it could have disastrous consequences for the company's share price.

"I thought it would do much better", Buffett admitted.

Buffett told shareholders Saturday that Berkshire could do a very large deal because it has more than $90 billion cash on hand.

Buffett also spoke about the failed Kraft Heinz bid for European consumer products giant Unilever.

Buffett says the board would look at both options if it ever decided he could generate good returns by investing the money.

That's a lot of capital that remains available for another big deal.

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