Monday, February 26, 2018

Excerpt from transcript of CNBC Buffett interview Feb 2018

BECKY QUICK: I mean, you lay this out in the annual report, but a lot of investors are told – retail investors are told, that they should have a certain percent of their portfolio in bonds. Maybe they're told 60/40, maybe they're told 70/30 stocks to bonds. That's something that you should do and that's the safe way of doing. What are they missing?
WARREN BUFFETT: Well, some people should not own stocks at all because they just get too upset with price fluctuations. If you're going to do dumb things because a stock goes down, you shouldn't own a stock at all. No, I mean—
BECKY QUICK: What are dumb things? Selling a stock because it goes down?
WARREN BUFFETT: Yeah, selling a stock because it goes down. I mean, you know, if you buy your house at $20,000 and somebody comes along the next day and says, "I'll pay you $15,000," you don't sell it because the quote's $15,000. You look at the house or whatever it may be. But some people are not actually emotionally or psychologically fit to own stocks. But I think more of them would be if you get educated on what you're really buying, which is part of a business. And the longer you hold stocks, the less risky they become, whereas the longer the maturity of a bond, the more risky it becomes.
BECKY QUICK: Do you feel like that's a message that is getting through to people? It's one that you repeat again and again. And I always feel like, I was watching a lot of the Olympics. And I felt like what they do in the Olympics is so easy. These guys sailing through the air and doing massive spins on the ice and turns. And then I read your annual letter and I think, "Oh, it's really easy to invest." And then I walk away and realize it's not that easy.
WARREN BUFFETT: It's not easy psychologically for many people. But I've been teaching since I was 21. I taught my first class on investments, and I had a class last week with 11 schools, 220 students. And some of them get it and some of them don't. Now, people would rather gamble. I mean, the idea that you can double your money in six months, that's just going to – it's why people go to the races, why they go to Vegas. You know, whatever it may be. They even know the odds are against them. And they still do it. I mean, it's a strong instinct to want to get rich fast. And I don't know how to do it.

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