Lessons for Corporate America - The Essays of Warren Buffett

By W E. %28ed.%29 Buffett

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Readers` Reviews

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
mike lee
I wrote the original review of this book many years ago and with the release of the new edition I wanted to add a few comments. Over the years the book since the book was published I always keep a copy of it close by as it has served as THE quick reference source for me whenever I want to review a topic that Warren has covered in his letter to shareholders. For instance dividends at Berkshire has been a big topic of conversation over the last couple of years and when I wanted to review what he had said on the topic all I had to do was open to the table of contents, see what page the coverage of the subject started (page 178), and I was able to read all his comments on the subject without having to find and flip all his individual letters. In short if you have any interest in Warren Buffett this will become an invaluable and time saving resource which I couldn't recommend highly enough.

My original review:

This book is a great, well organized compilation of Mr. Buffett's famous "Letters to Shareholders" which appear in the annual reports of Berkshire Hathaway.
It has been recently updated to include the letters to shareholders written since the book was first released in 1996, a new introduction has been written, and a new, tougher, blue cover has been added. Mr. Buffett advised shareholders at the 1999 & 2000 Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting if he had to pick a single book describing his methods, this would be the one. It is a great tool to use when trying to compile Mr. Buffett's comments on a particular subject since it is organized by subjects he has discussed in his letters over the years. Trying to find all of his comments on a particular subject throughout the annual reports is a time consuming task when you have to look through many years worth of annual reports. Mr. Cunningham has made this task much simpler with this book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
awesome essays. must read for investors.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
sophia b
Well done
Jack: Straight from the Gut :: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life - The Snowball :: Investment Strategies of the World's Greatest Investor :: The Search for the Company with a Durable Competitive Advantage :: Reading Financial Statements for Value Investing - Warren Buffett Accounting Book
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
exactly as described
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Well organized by subject. Good for reference and thought provoking reading.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
mai gamal
Excellent reading, nicely constructed, only slightly repetitive
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lisa bloom
Wisdom for the ages
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
tom walker
Great insight.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
A nicely done job of weaving together decades of Berkshire Hathaway annual letters. For me, it was a solid introduction into aspects of the economy, finance, and corporate governance that I have no prior teaching to guide me. At times, it gets painfully detailed and technical from the accounting standpoint, but that may be the nature of things.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
katie hoiland
This is really well done. I've read a bunch of "biographies" and works about Buffett, but none of them to compare to his own words.
His annual reports to shareholders are fabulous learning tools.
And his wit made me laugh out loud at times.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
bat 123
must have. the only buffet book with his actual words. buffet himself says it is the best book about him. he says all other books about him all have mistakes. according to an interview granted to liz clayman of cnbc.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
eva bernard
It may seem odd to spend money on publicly available information but reading what Warren Buffett had to say on a given topic in all these years in a cohesive fashion is invaluable.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jayakrishnan k
There are so many Buffett books out there. This is my favorite to date. Much easier than carrying around all the annual reports.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
pouriya parsa
Interesting collection.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
carrie sterrett
If you are thinking a getting an overview regarding successful investing philosophies in general i would greatly recommend this book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
noelle arcuri
Good book, no pages missing! Useful for my class. It arrived in a timely manner.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
gayle parness
Great summation of Buffets ideas in his own words. Book does a great job of showing the evolution over time without needing to read every letter in full. The book also does a great job organizing thoughts into themes which help you quickly re-reference ideas later without spending all day looking for where you saw it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
linda friedrich
Fantastic book. Buffet is a true American capitalist.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Without a doubt, The Essays of Warren Buffett : Lessons for Corporate America was a definitive and clear insight into the mind of a genius - just see my review for this first edition. The Second Edition, however, adds another dimension reflective of today's business and investing environment.


Corporate Governance
- addition of "Audit Committees" section. As usual, a frank and down-to-earth assessment of just how honest an "audit committee" can be (it can't) - great addition, brings investors back to reality for believing these jokers.

Corporate Finance and Investing
- addition of "Debt" section, and in particular how Berkshire views debt, a section just about every business owner (home-owner too!) and profit/loss manager should read.

Alternatives to Common Stock:
- addition of "Foreign Currencies and Equities" section. Frankly, the decline of the dollar has made this topic of relevance to all investors - but Berkshire still loves America's "dynamism and resiliency." Yet another great, topical addition.
- addition of "derivatives" section. Hedge funds have made this a household term, yet don't be fooled. Not surprisingly, Charlie Munger and Warren call them "time bombs."

Accounting and Valuation:
- addition of "Accounting for Mergers" section. Here, Charlie and Warren put forth their idea for dealing with accounting for acquisitions, whether it be "purchase" or "pooling."
- addition of "Some Insurance History and Accounting" section. True to its name, Warren guides the reader from the birth of Lloyd's, through the asbestos crisis to Berkshire issuing a massive retroactive reinsurance contract. If you invest in Berkshire, you'll want to read this section too.

In all, this updated version provides investors with a timely resource for investing in today's world. Additionally, all managers (and professionals who want to grow) should read this book because here, Cunningham neatly organizes selections from Warren Buffet's annual essays and guides them through a tough-minded, down-to-earth and common sensical manual for reference in today's (sometimes exceedingly) complex business environment.

For these reasons, this reviewer highly recommends "The Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporate America" - Second Edition.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Really as good as new!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This is simply the best business book there is. I have read both editions and given copies to several clients.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
marcus erenberger
Excellent work.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
omar salah
Great Books, the man is a financial wizzard! I am learning much.

The CEO's of fallen businesses should read this to see just how they went wrong. Other CEO's should read these books as well to keep from failing.

The government should read the books to avoid idiotic gifts to poorly run companies.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
mary kay
It's debatable whether the editing job is worth the price. You could easily look up all of Warren Buffet's Berkshire shareholder letters online for free. However, Cunningham does a great job of connecting themes from different years/letters and so I believe the cost was worth the editing job. Great read.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
A great book worth reading for every investor
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
peter wanless
If only more corporations were run like Berkshire Hathaway. Common sense on how to run a company and to manage it. If you are an investor, it should be required reading.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ahmet bilal
The only minus - this great book should not have been published in paperback. It does worth being published in a solid hardcover.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
martin pennington
My investing strategy completely changed after reading this. I had already shared some core ideas, apparently, but others I completely changed as a result of reading this book. It's more than worth it's worth in Gold.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
deena thomson
Great learning from a master!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
linda oesterle
It shows the "Road to Rome" of getting rich.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jed keith
Buffett, the master investor, shares some keys to his success. Recommended for any investor.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
gwen weddington
If you are into capital allocation, this is the book to read. If you are CEO of a corporation this is the book to read. If you are an entrepreneur, this book gives you insight into what to do with your capital if you become successful.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
tom cork
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Great book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
The thing that strikes me in reading this book is the amazing moral standard that Buffett maintains. Oh, that more of the corporate world would practice his ethics. You're in for a treat with this read.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
elsa mauer
When you can't find that quote online this book comes to help.

The internet is less helpful with detailed information than people make you think.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
mollie giem
Clearly written. Buffet cares about the investor and writes well. The book is arranged by topic but it isn't clear when something was written (and I found myself wondering).
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Perfect book. It's even better then I thought it would be. It's fairly easy to read and not very technical so it's a book that you can really sink yourself into and read for sometime without getting burned out on.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I like the way the book has been organized by investment topic. This is a must read for any aspiring investor.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
I would not recommend this book to everyone, because he uses some advanced economic terms that some people wouldn't understand. However, I was able to understand most of what he was saying and it was an interesting perspective on how he invests in companies; I'd never thought of investing quite the way he does. It is a good book and I'd recommend it to anyone with a background in economics.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lori shepard
In the first place, Lawrence Cunningham, whose school it turns out is just a couple blocks from me here in Manhattan, has done a very fine public service in collecting these essays. If you've ever tried to wade through Buffet's annual letters yourself, you know that there are long bits of detailed financial discussions interspersed with the gems of wisdom, aphorisms, and humor that the amateur Buffet-ette is more apt to be seeking. So his collection and coalition, which is well-chosen, well-ordered, and well-edited is a treat for any Buffet fan looking for an accessible volume of the man's work.
Buffet has the strangest of powers in that he comes across as a homespun billionaire. Now that's different from just being homespun, the way Sam Walton was, or just being a billionaire, like Bill Gates. Buffet flaunts his wealth and his professional love of money, all the while expressing essential, eternal truths in simple, earthy phrases. When I saw Buffet speak at business school he tapped on the microphone to test it and said "testing, testing, one-million, two-million, three-million." It is that natural genius for combining wealth, truth and comedy that is most vividly on display in "The Essays of Warren Buffet.".
Of course, these timeless, simple truths are all known - the way we know that "eat less, exercise more" is how to lose weight. And yet, and yet, it takes Buffet to remind us to "think like an owner"; invest only in management that you "like, trust, and admire"; and buy pieces of business (stocks) when it costs less than the intrinsic value.
There are the excellent statements of managerial accountability, business valuation, and capital structure. Helpful warnings on accounting shenanigans, trading costs, and paying heed to Mr. Market. For clarity, brevity, wit, truth, and learning, there is no business writer in the 20th century that compares with Warren Buffet.
Buffet's sayings are irreplaceable (and I am not cherry picking here, but merely highlighting a half-dozen of the hundreds of bon mots in this book):
"On the other hand, working with people who cause your stomach to churn seems much like marrying for money - probably a bad idea under any circumstances, but absolute madness if you are already rich."
"The speed at which a business success is recognized, furthermore, is not that important as long as the company's intrinsic value is increasing at a satisfactory rate. In fact, delayed recognition can be an advantage: It may give us the chance to buy more of a good thing at a bargain price."
"Just as work expands to fill available time, corporate projects or acquisitions will materialize to soak up available funds... any business craving of the leader, however foolish, will be quickly supported by detailed rate-of-return and strategic studies prepared by his troops"
In regard to acquisitions, which usually fail to earn the cost of capital: "The managers at fault periodically report on the lesson they have learned from the latest disappointment. They then usually seek out future lessons."
"One of the ironies of the stock market is the emphasis on activity. Brokers, using terms such as `marketability' and `liquidity," sing the praises of companies with high share turnover... but investors should understand that what is good for the croupier is not good for the customer. A hyperactive stock market is the pick pocket of enterprise."
On acquiring bad companies for cheap prices: "In my early days as a manager I, too, dated a few toads. They were cheap dates - I've never been much of a sport - but my results matched those of acquirers who courted higher-price toads. I kissed and they croaked."
Buffet is approaching literature here - the nuance involved, and the delicious counter-pointing of toads, dates, sport are pitch-perfect. The payoff - "I kissed and they croaked" is as fine a line of found poetry as exists.
Buffet, having studied at the feet of the master of investment literature for the first half of the 20th century, has ascended to become the master of investment literature, unqualified. This is a book that will please Buffet-maniacs, investors, finance newbies, and anybody with an interest in the articulated evolution of managerial capitalism that has separated the finance and capital allocation specialties from the operational and day-to-day specializations.
In closing, it's appropriate to quote America's great investing wag quoting America's greatest political wag - the subject is, as always with Buffet, simple maths and simple truths:
"Managers thinking about accounting issues should never forget one of Abraham Lincoln's favorite riddles: `How many legs does a dog have if you call his tail a leg?' The answer: `Four, because calling a tail a leg does not make it a leg'."
Enjoy this book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
This book was a bit hard to follow at times but was none-the-less packed with good insight and information. I will read this again down the road and will hopefully comprehend more of it once I expand my knowledge base. Worth the money.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
christine felton
A bit repetitive and sometimes dry but what do you expect from a book pieced together from annual reports. Thank God Warren Buffett is an excellent story teller. Beyond that, the information in this book is invaluable.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
susan e
Just read it. It is a must-read for investors.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
student gift
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Always a pleasure to read Warren Buffett's writings.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
kelli st
If you like Warren Buffet's sense of humor and investing style this book is a good read. Should be recommended reading for all MBAs.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
laura wasserman
Great read!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
christy angerhofer
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
a gift
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
rebecca fuller
I began reading this as a textbook. It's very informative and insightful. However, it seems more directed at shareholders of Berkley than at the general public.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
abby hohmeier
My mom gave this book to my son at his request. He told me he had read it and it was what he thought it would be and helpful to him.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
brandy burdick
Still relevant. Written with excellent use of humour and honesty. A great into to investing. Five more words required. Sheep
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
stacy lewis
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
Very well compiled book teaches the basis tenets of long term investing can get a bit boring towards the end accounting sections but nonetheless great learning experience
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
A wonderful collection of Buffett's wisdom - the value of which should be clear to all in the investing / business world.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I rated this a 5 because this book contains the most lucid, clear thinking on how to think about investing that you can find outside of maybe The Most Important Thing by Howard Marks of Oaktree Capital and Charlie Munger's writings. This is an exceptional collection and I would gladly pay many times the sticker price for this gem.

To put it quite simply, Warren Buffett is one of the most influencial thought leaders in the history of investing and there's really no better source of information for how he thinks than this book. If you want a book on how to invest, this probably isn't for you. If you want a book that teaches you how to think... buy now.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Great book with great insight into Warren's unique thinking
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This is a well-formatted collection of the Buffett's various essays. Buffett has a magical way of writing complex financial topics in an enjoyable, folksy way. More importantly, this book will make you a better investor.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
tylah marie
What a pleasure it was to read this book. The form and the content are superb. It's about so much more than investment! The organization of the essays makes for subjects spanning years of experience, including setbacks. Warren Buffett's great mind and values shine through.
★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆
joshua slone
This product was interesting, but not one of the better products that I have purchased on the life of Warren Buffet.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
nicole rubin
Very interesting read
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
katy averill
Lesson from the best investor of all time. Very nicely organized. Easy to read. One of those books you'll read over and over again. Enjoy.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
A wonderful compilation of Buffet's guiding investment philosophy. He covers a range of investing topics from corporate management to accounting. This book has some technical business concepts and terminology so might not be the best for beginners.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
liza decamp
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Fantastic read
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Warren is unique- lots of good lessons here for investors be they large or small. Good perspective into the process and views from Mr Buffett
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
janelle schmeling
This is a great book! Anyone who is interested in the mind of Warren Buffett and want to learn about how he makes his investment ideas should get this book.

This is a must read for beginner investors and a good refresher for experienced ones.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I chose this rating, because my son whom I bought this book for cannot set it down. Good Reading, Excellent.
★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆
kevin daly
Talk about a boring book, this thing sucked. But he's rich, must be doing something right. I read that some people said this was the most important book they have ever read..I read one chapter because I had to for an investment class, it's a lot of common sense
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
krisanne spring
Warren Buffett is fond of saying that he loves Coca-Cola (the stock) because of the virtue of knowing how its business will look a decade from now (i.e. the same). One can almost certainly say the same about his own writings: A century from now people will still marvel at the insights and resonance from Buffett's annual shareholder letters and other publications, trying to apply them in their own investments. If Security Analysis (Ben Graham) laid the foundations for valuing companies and Philip Fisher's Common Stocks...detailed how true business analysis should be done, then Essays of... will be referred to as the advisory blueprint of combining these two to create an outstanding- and lasting investment result, all the while having impeccable ethical standards. Given the fact that there are 53 million hits on "Warren Buffett blogs", there simply is no substitute to reading the actual words of the best investor of our time.

Due to Berkshire's massive success in all aspects of the word, Buffett has transformed into a cartoon-like figure, with even professional investors knowing him more by punchy one-liners such as "our favourite holding period is forever". As headline-ish as this is, it is akin to judging the merits of Usain Bolt from a Puma-commercial. To me, apart from the Berkshire-numbers themselves, what has always been the standout attribute of Buffett and his letters are the ability to synthesise immensely complex matters into common-sense opinions. Has there been better real-life practitioners than Buffett and Munger of Einstein's quote "everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler"? The shareholder letters are filled with discussions around everything from board practices, arbitrage, "value" investing, junk bonds, accounting, tax policy, stock-options and countless other topics.

Essays of... consists of chosen parts of Buffett's letters to Berkshire shareholders throughout the years, organized according to coherent themes. By compiling them in this way, Cunningham clearly did all us Buffett-lemmings a massive favour. But not only that. I believe that this book has given - and is destined to increasingly do so in the future - Buffett's writings the attention they deserve among a wider audience. Not merely as a convenient go-to source for journalists to get his views on the flavour-of-the-day topic, but more importantly as mandatory reading for business school students and corporate decision-makers. As Cunningham states: "Many of Buffett's lessons directly contradict what has been taught in business and law schools during the past thirty years, and what has been practiced on Wall Street and throughout corporate America during that time". This collection of essays can truly re-educate a generation of students and continue the education of others. This is more important than it sounds, because if the gospel of modern finance theory and using complexity for its own sake had done enough harm upon this book's publishing date in 1997, it has doubled down on its effort as of today.

In my mind, some of the most interesting letters are the ones written in the late 70s and 1980s. It was during this time Buffett transformed from cigar-butt and "work-out" investing to the methods most people define him by today; predictable corporations with a competitive moat bought at a fair price. One of the first investments made along this line of thinking, at the behest of partner Charlie Munger, was the 1972 acquisition of See's Candy from the See-family. The letter(s) that go through this thought-process are superb in describing the merits of investing in high-return business. As a side-note, despite paying only 6x profits, the relatively high P/B multiples actually made Buffett reject the deal before finally completing it.

Some books just provide the reader with that "intangible" value of being worth more than the sum of its words. It leaves you with an extra layer of conviction of what's right and wrong, what's permanent knowledge and what's more fleeting. Essays of... has that invaluable quality.

This is a review by eqtbooks.com
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
'The Essays of Warren Buffett' really do provide lessons for corporate America, as claimed; they also provide important lessons for investors. I especially like his succinct observations. In his opening essay he reports that Berkshire has two low-cost, non-perilous sources of leverage - deferred taxes (Berkshire retains all earnings) and 'float' (funds of others held by its insurance companies - have broken even over his tenure), totaling about $12 billion. These are liabilities w/o covenants or due dates. 'Beware of companies that do not expense options or employ fanciful pension assumptions,' he says. EBITDA is a misleading measure of performance - depreciation applies to cash outlays made before an asset delivers any benefits. Unintelligible footnotes usually indicate untrustworthy management (eg. Enron). Be suspicious of companies that trumpet earnings projections and growth expectations - the world is full of surprises that can make them into fantasies.

The supreme irony of business management is that it is far easier for an inadequate CEO to keep his job than for an inadequate subordinate. CEO performance standards either don't exist or are fuzzy, often explained away (eg. the weather, economy, competition). Another reason - relations between a CEO and the board are expected to be congenial. Successful CEO performance is usually more a measure of the industry than the CEO; it is usually better to abandon a leaking 'boat' (business in a struggling industry) than to try patching it.

Buffett does not sell holdings just because they've appreciated or been held a long time; only if the market overvalues them or the prospective return on capital becomes unsatisfactory or there are concerns about management.

Controlling a company (vs. owning parts via marketable securities) offers two advantages to Berkshire: 1)It gets to direct the allocation of capital; Buffett believes most CEOs are not good at this), and 2)the tax code provides financial benefits as much as 50% better when they come from an 80% or greater holding.

Growth benefits investors only when the business can invest incremental returns at enticing rates; growth in a low-return business requiring incremental funds hurts investors.

What counts for most people in investment is not how much they know but how realistically they define what they don't know - eg. complex and/or constantly changing businesses; Buffett stays away from both. An investor will do better in a secondary market than buying new issues - the latter is ruled by controlling stockholders/corporate leadership who are not going to offer any bargains. Buffett purchased a 10% interest in Wells Fargo at less than 5X after-tax earnings (less than 3X before-tax earnings).

'Beware of past performance "proofs" in finance. If history books were the key to riches, the Forbes 400 would consist of librarians.'

Evaluating a company's ability to pay interest while ignoring depreciation is delusional - capital expenditures are as real as labor or utility costs. Ignoring interest accruing on zero-coupon bonds as well is even worse, assumes a renegotiation of the bonds when they come due. Wall Street, however, loves these - deals can be made at prices no longer limited by actual earning power, allowing more deals. Thus, investment bankers become promoters. Many failed S&Ls bought these.

Berkshire carries all stocks at their market value on its balance sheet; changes in value do not impact earnings until the asset is sold. (Exception: Changes in currency valuations are reflected into earnings.) Derivatives generate reported earnings that are often wildly overstated and based on inaccuracies that may not be exposed for many years. Often there is no real market and 'mark-to-model' is utilized. Errors in doing such have not been symmetrical and almost invariably favor the CEO and/or trader eyeing large bonuses via reporting impressive 'earnings.' Buffett tries to avoid companies with significant post-retirement liabilities.

Foreigners now earn more on their U.S. investments than we do abroad ('06). Buffett is quite concerned about our large, growing cumulative trade deficits - foresees a cumulative $11 trillion by about 2016 when GDP reaches $18 trillion, costing about $550 billion/year in debt service alone. A greatly declining dollar has not provided a solution.

And so it goes, fascinating and valuable all the way.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
meagan bolles
These essays are collected from Berkshire's annual letter to shareholders, which are available for free on Berkshire Hathaway's website. The essays Lawrence Cunningham selected provide a good synopsis of Warren's investment philosophies and cut through to the point of some very important concepts. Both Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger are the clearest-minded, sharpest, to-the-point thinkers when it comes to investments and their openness in sharing their true beliefs is an unbelievable blessing for those wise enough to pay attention and study. I doubt there is any other billionaire who would share his innermost thoughts, beliefs and secrets to success in the fashion that Buffett does.

OK enough praise, I could go on and on about his successes but here are a few tidbits from the book:

"Inactivity strikes us as intelligent behavior. Neither we nor most business managers would dream of feverishly trading highly-profitable subsidiaries because a small move in the Federal Reserve's discount rate or because some Wall Street pundit had reversed his views on the market."

"Obviously many companies in high-tech businesses or embryonic industries will grow much faster in percentage terms than will `The Inevitables- Coke, Gillette and his latest perchase BUD'. But I would rather certain of a good result than hopeful of a great one."

"In our view, though, investment students need only two well-tought courses-How to Value a Business, and How to Think about Market Prices. Your goal as an investor should simply be to purchase, at a rational price, a part interest in an easily-understandable business who's earnings are virtually certain to be materially higher five, ten and twenty years from now."

"In the final chapter of The Intelligent Investor, Ben Graham points our: `Confronted with a challenge to distill the secret of sound investment into three words, we venture the motto, Margin of Safety.' Forty-two years after reading that, I still think those are the right three words."

"Beware of past-performance `proofs' in finance: If history books were the key to riches, the Forbes 400 would consist of librarians."

"Market commentators and investment managers who glibly refer to `growth' and `value' styles as contrasting approaches to investment are displaying their ignorance, not their sophistication."

Berkshire's purchase criteria:

1) Large purchases (at least $50 million of before tax earnings)

2) Demonstrated consistent earnings power (future projections are of little interest to us, nor are turnaround situations)

3) Businesses earning good return on equity while employing little or no debt

4) Management in place - We cant supply it

5) Simple business (if there's l;ots of technology, we won't understand it)

6) An offering price

Some interesting stats on See's Chocolates which was bought in 1972 by Blue Chip Stamps- a subsidiary of Berkshire:

Bought early in 1972 for $25 million and was earning about $2 million after tax. (which was 25% return on net tangible assets of $8 million)

In 1983 See's earned $13 million after taxes ($27 million pre-tax)

In 1995 it earned $50 million pre-tax

By Kevin Kingston author of A 20,000% Gain in Real Estate: A True Story About the Ups and Downs From Wall Street to Real Estate Leading up to Phenomenal Returns

My Blog: The Real Estate Investors Blog
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
patricia u
If you are used to reading public company annual reports, including the (usually) short letters from company presidents, you know how shallow, self-congratulatory and sometimes even misleading these reports can be. On the (extreme) other hand, Warren Buffett's annual letters in his Berkshire Hathaway annual reports represent detailed, on-target, lively and highly readable masterpieces of valuable education, information, and wit. You can read Buffett's annual letters for free at Berkshire Hathaway's website, but it will take you a while, since there are many of them (back to 1977) and they run 20+ pages each. Further, Buffett's various letters weren't intended to serve as serial chapters of a book. Better, you can shell out the cost of Lawrence Cunningham's thematically organized collection (220 pages or so)of Buffett's essays and gain a better appreciation of the numerous important topics that Buffett addresses. These topics include, first and foremost, the critical impact of the quality of corporate governance--Buffett was years ahead of most investors in focusing on this area. Other topics include corporate finance (addressed with a clarity that is both unusual and revealing of Buffett's powers of insight), mergers and acquisitions, accounting (Buffett is the only person I know who can regularly make accounting seem positively interesting), taxes, junk bonds and much more.
Moreover, Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway is nearly unique in its intense commitment to shareholders. The opposite (a commitment to management entrenchment and exorbitant compensation) is the norm with so many companies today that it would be easy to forget how vital shareholder primacy should be. As you read Buffett's essays you will have a model to measure other companies against--which should come in handy the next time you exercise your voting rights as a shareholder.
Life is short. As an investor or a concerned citizen-shareholder, you can learn through your own experiences, of course. There's nothing wrong with that, but the process can be long and expensive. (Depending on one's experiences, it can be very expensive.) Alternately, you can learn via Warren Buffett's lifetime of experiences distilled into a very readable, lively, fascinating collection of his essays. Buy the book-I doubt that you'll regret it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This book collects all the essays which Warren Buffett wrote, which in essence is his Berkshire Hathaway chairman's report, and arranges them neatly in order so the reader isn't confused. The great thing about this, is that you don't have to go digging through mountains of statistics and figures just to find Mr Buffett's words of advice and wisdom. This is especially good for non Berkshire shareholders who haven't had access to the reports since day one. The Berkshire reports tends to assume that you've been following them in order hence if you start off with the 1993 one, you'll probably end up all muddled.
Now as we all know, there are loads of books dedicated to Mr Buffett and proclaim to be able to help you use Mr Buffett's wisdom and turn yourself into Warren Buffett Jr. What makes this book stands out from the others is that it doesn't make any attempt to interpret or analyze Mr Buffett's investment technique nor does the author try to give advice to the reader. Its all Warren Buffett plain and simple. In defence of the accusation that this book is [not great]since you can get everything from the reports, I'd just like to point out that this book never made any attempt to be anything but exactly what appeared in the Berkshire annual reports. If you are comfortable with the numbers that appear in the report, by all means continue with the report. This book is merely attempting to makes your life much easier if you don't want to pound your head needlessly figuring out the figures that plague the report, but yet be able to access Mr Buffett's wisdom. Also I'd like to point out that Warren Buffett has never written any books apart from what appeared in the annual reports. In escence Larry Cunningham has created the book Warren Buffett has never written. All the others which the authors offer their opinion on the investing style has diluted Mr Buffetts wisdom and you now have to sort out which is the author's own conviction and which one is authentically Warren Buffett
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Basically a collection of letters by Buffett where he shares his perspectives. He's very easy to understand and follow. His discussion on dividend policy and share buy-backs really left an impression for me, but there's a load of other subjects: conflicts of interests with management, acquisitions, etc. The book itself is sorted by subject, not chronology.

Also, let's not under-estimate that Buffett is an extremely talented manager (Berkshire Hathaway is basically the world's largest conglomerate), and we can all take a lesson from him on how he encourages his employees; you'll see a lot of "honest compliments" that Warren hand's out, similar to what is preached by Dale Carnegie. Some of the material you can still find in his annual letters to share-holders.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
craig case
This collection of essays by Warren E. Buffett, compiled by Lawrence A. Cunningham, is an excellent introduction to basic investment concepts that have proven successful for the 'Oracle of Omaha' and his loyal following. The reader will want to supplement these papers periodically with more timely updates from the annual letter Buffett writes to the shareholders of Berkshire Hathaway. Buffett's ideas have been widely reported so there are no surprises here. To be sure, Buffett is consistent. He pokes fun at the 'efficient market' school which confuses stock price with stock value. Early on we hear him calling for the expensing of stock options and urging more transparent, segmented financial reporting by large companies. For Buffett mechanically rebalancing portfolios to achieve diversification, back in fashion, may miss the point of holding-on to your best investments for superior returns. Distinguishing between Growth and Value styles of investing is unnecessary and misleading. If you have ever wondered why Berkshire Hathaway does not pay a dividend or why it doesn't split its high stock price, Buffett gives his reasoned explanations. It was Warren Buffett's fundamental school mentor Benjamin Graham who introduced the allegory of Mr. Market and the concept of 'margin of safety' both of which get satisfactory attention here. Most importantly, I think, Buffett reminds us continually that as stock market investors we are buying for the long-term parts of real businesses that produce measurable cash flows as evidence of their intrinsic value. Real businesses that produce real value are run by dedicated, competent leaders who know how to allocate capital. Hanging-on to such deceptively simple principles can get an investor through some very rough market cycles. Reading this collection is a lot like listening to the conversation of an avuncular and very experienced elder who with great patience, common sense, and wit explains what principles have guided his (investment) life. Indeed uncommon sense and integrity are hallmarks of Warren Buffett's writings. Humor too. In what other serious investment study will you get quotations from such luminaries as Woody Allen, Mae West, and Yogi Berra. Buffett loves aphorisms to make his point. I challenge anyone reading this book not to underline or commit to memory some of these gems. For a general introduction to the fundamental school view of investing this collection is required reading.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
In a news interview, Warren Buffet was asked about about the many books written about him and his philosophy. He explicitly likes one particular book- "The Essays of Warren Buffet: Lessons For Corporate America".

It reads like a series of college essays. More than the academics, it gives a perspective that is conducive to making quality stock picks. Warren Buffet's philosophy on stocks hinges on the premise that you are buying a company for the long-term and not the short-term. Thus, he invests on companies such as Coca-Cola, See's Candy, Fruit of the Loom, etc. There are not many (if any) dot com companies.

This is a quality book that is intellectually stimulating that makes practical sense (cents).

JR Felisilda
Author of the book, "Nanay: Lessons From a Mother"
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
For reasons perhaps known only to the store, reviews of all three prior editions of Buffett’s essays/letters are also included with reviews of this new (Fourth) edition. Therefore, I have no choice but to add it to my reviews of earlier editions. Here we go.

* * *

There are several people I wish to thank for increasing substantially my understanding and appreciation of fundamental business principles. I am not – and never have been – an investor in stocks and bonds but have learned so much of value from the material Benjamin Graham provides in The Intelligent Investor: The Definitive Book on Value Investing. A Book of Practical Counsel (Revised Edition). Warren Buffet is next, one of Graham’s students and later an associate. I have read all four editions of his essays (i.e. his letters to Berkshire-Hathaway shareholders), edited by Lawrence Cunningham whose introductions are exceptionally informative as well as eloquent. I am grateful to Carol Loomis for her entertaining as well as insightful book, Tap Dancing to Work: Warren Buffett on Practically Everything, 1966-2013. Tho there sources I now add Jeremy Miller’s Warren Buffett’s Ground Rules: Words of Wisdom from the Partnership Letters of the World’s Greatest Investor.

According to Cunningham in his Preface to the FOURTH Edition, “The year 2015 marks the fiftieth anniversary of Berkshire Hathaway under Warren Buffet’s leadership, a milestone worth commemorating…As in previous editions of The Essays, this one retain the architecture and philosophy of the original edition but adds selections from Warren’s most recent shareholder letters, including his fiftieth anniversary retrospective [please see pages 287-299]. All the letters are woven together into a fabric that reads as a complete and coherent narrative of a sound business and investment philosophy.”

Ben Graham held that price is what you pay and value is what you get. These two issues are rarely identical, but most people who invest rarely notice any difference. With regard his influence, Cunningham observes, “One of Graham’s most profound contributions is a character who lives on Wall Street, Mr. Market. He is your hypothetical business partner who is daily willing to buy your interest in a business or sell you his at prevailing market prices…Another leading prudential legacy from Graham is his margin-of-safety principle. This principle holds that one should not make an investment in a security unless there is sufficient basis for believing that the price being paid is substantially lower than the value being delivered…The circle of competence is the third leg of Graham/Buffett stool of intelligent investing, along with Mr. Market and the margin of safety. This commonsense rule instructs investors to consider investments only concerning the businesses they are capable of understanding with a modicum of effort.”

Somehow Lawrence achieves both convergence and coherence with several dozen of Buffett's essays, written within a 35-year timeframe (1979-2014). The material does indeed read as “a complete and coherent narrative of a sound business and investment philosophy.” The eleven sections range from Corporate Governance to Berkshire at Fifty and Beyond. Over the years, I have accumulated more than one hundred Warren Buffett quotations and have selected these as indicative of the thrust and flavor of his perspectives.

o The best thing I did was to choose the right heroes.
o What we learn from history is that people don’t learn from history
o Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.
o Rule No.1: Never lose money. Rule No.2: Never forget rule No.1.
o Chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken.
o It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you'll do things differently.
o Only when the tide goes out do you discover who's been swimming naked.
o It’s far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price.
o Wall Street is the only place that people ride to in a Rolls Royce to get advice from those who take the subway.
o Somebody once said that in looking for people to hire, you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if you don’t have the first, the other two will kill you. You think about it; it’s true. If you hire somebody without [integrity], you really want them to be dumb and lazy.

With regard to other sources, I also highly recommend these: Alice Schroeder’s The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life, Roger Lowenstein’s Buffett: The Making of an American Capitalist, and Tren Griffin’s Charlie Munger: The Complete Investor.

* * *

This is the Third Edition of an ongoing process by which Warren Buffett presents a "chairman's letter" (i.e. progress report with his unique reflections) to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders at their annual meeting. Lawrence A. Cunningham edited each of the three editions, with the latest including Buffett's annual letters to Berkshire shareholders since 2008, the date of the prior edition. Other new material includes:

o The financial crisis and its continuing implications for investors, managers and society;
o The housing bubble at the bottom of that crisis
o The debt and derivatives excesses that fueled the crisis and how to deal with them
o Controlling risk and protecting reputation in corporate governance
o Berkshire's acquisition and operation of Burlington Northern Santa Fe
o The role of oversight in heavily regulated industries
o Investment possibilities today
o Weaknesses of popular option valuation models

Some other material has been rearranged to deepen the themes and lessons that the collection has always produced:

o Buffett's "owner-related business principles" are in the prologue as a separate subject
o Valuation and accounting topics are spread over four instead of two sections and reordered to sharpen their payoff.

According to Cunningham, "Those who are familiar with The Essays will notice that we have made the cover snappier than has been our custom. (Thanks for the cover design to Tim Colton, of Carolina Academic Press, which will continue to partner with me in the distribution of the book.) The main reason: the book's traditional covers could be seen well in physical form but pictures of them, shown on the internet, could not. Since most sales are done over the Internet these days, the cover needed a face-lift.

"The adage remains, however, that one should not judge a book by its cover. This book should continue to be judged on its content and organization, in which a distinctive investment and business philosophy is coherently articulated. Thanks to the many fans of the book, first published in 1997. I hope you enjoy the updated edition. And I hope to see many of you in Omaha for the Berkshire shareholders' meeting in May."

With regard to the Third Edition's subtitle, "Lessons for Corporate America," my own opinion is that almost all of the lessons can be of substantial value to leaders in any organization, whatever its size and nature may be. Among Buffett's most important and yet least appreciated talents is his ability to establish a direct and personal rapport with each person he meets or who reads any of his letters as well as any of his articles such as those included in Carol Loomis' superb book, Tap Dancing to Work: Warren Buffett on Practically Everything, 1966-2012.

I watched three segments of Buffett and Loomis' appearances on The Charlie Rose Show and their informal but gracious manner made me feel as if I had been a personal friend of theirs for many years. (I wish I had purchased Berkshire stock 50 years ago!) Credit Cunningham with brilliant editing as well as his own contributions to what continues to be a "moveable feast" of information, insights, wisdom, and wit. Once again, his Introduction (all by itself) is worth much more than the cost of the book as he again discusses with rigor and eloquence what he considers to be key points about Buffett and his leadership of Berkshire Hathaway in recent years.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
amber b
As a professional business consultant and investor, I have read many of the books that claim to offer clarity and vision in the corporate world. This book alone truly offers that clarity of vision.
Buffett is the keenest observer of the workings of modern finance and businesses alive today. He blows away the smoke and mirrors, and lays out the truth underlying how the business systems actually work.
After reading this book, I read the other classic value investing titles ("securities analysis", "intelligient investor", et al), and then reconfigured my portfolio in a more buffettlike way (including a major purchase of Berkshire Hathaway equity).
My only concern with this book is that it is based on the ability to compare "current market price" of a stock with "current business value" of the business it buys. Sadly, it never gives a methodology (there are many) for determining analytically what that business value is. One can only assume that the methodology suggested is the one put forth by his mentor Graham in "Securities Analysis."
If "business analysis" was awarded a Nobel, Buffett would be making a trip to Stockholm, and this book is the layman's guide to his science.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
laura brown
The most famed investor of his time, Warren Buffett, has never written a book. Although there are dozens of books that are written about him, this is the only book in Buffett's own words. This collection of Buffett's writings on different topics come from his annual reports. It is true that you could go to the Berkshire Hathaway website and look at the annual reports yourself, but not everyone wants to flip through 15 annual reports. Moreover, this book is organized by topic and not by year, unlike the annual reports.

This is an invaluable for both investors and managers. I emphatically recommend this book to CFOs, investment bankers, financial analysts, and anyone else interested in corporate finance and business valuation.

For those people that wish to learn about Buffett's philosophy this is the book to read. Who better to learn about Buffett than from Buffett himself?
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
nils samuels
"The Essays of Warren Buffett" is a textbook on proper business practice used at Cardozo Law. Yeah, I know you can go to the Berkshire Hathaway website and get all of Buffett's letters to the shareholders (in fact those who truly want to know more can do this). But this book cuts to the chase. It is edited in such a way that the essays are grouped in a logical manner. Thus, you don't have to plow through all the letters ( which at times can be boring and redundant).This makes reading rather convenient and efficient. The parts of the book that are most useful for an individual investor are the sections on "corporate governance" (in which Buffett describes what makes a good CEO and Board) and on "corporate finance and investing" ( in which Buffett argues against the Efficient Market Theory and argues for the Graham-Dodd approach). I found the essays on "accounting and valuation" and "accounting policy and tax matters" a bit tedious (though the section on stock options was rather interesting).
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
There are plenty of books written about Warren Buffett, but what is a better source if not THE source: Warren Buffett. There are just so many lessons to learn from this book. I loved the section where Mr. Buffett explains the Cigar Butts investment style that he practiced before Charlie Munger convinced him to change his style into buying excellent companies at reasonable prices and holding them for a long time. Mr. Buffett is very good at explaining difficult concepts in simple terms that almost anybody can understand.

- Mariusz Skonieczny, author of Why Are We So Clueless about the Stock Market? Learn how to invest your money, how to pick stocks, and how to make money in the stock market
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
erin joy
If you are at all involved in business or investing, you should read this book.
NOTE: Though you can read all of Buffett's letters to the shareholders that are assimilated in this compilation through Berkshire Hathaway's website, I found this compilation quite helpful and much more "user-friendly" than clicking through links upon links of letters.
As far as material is concerned, Buffett speaks to the masses as the messiah of capitalism- not that he would ever claim such a title. As a recent college grad, I found that I learned more from reading Buffett's writings than I learned in numerous college courses. The material in his letters is simply that insightful. Did I mention that Buffett is a funny old guy? That all comes through in these letters, as well. In another life, Buffett would have made an excellent teacher. Fortunately, Buffett likes to talk - he wants to share his understandings and insights, the thoughts of the master: his letters or "essays" are those thoughts. And what a nice little book in which to read them. I know that I am better off as an investor and as an academic for reading them.
I will undoubtedly re-read this book at least once more. I cannot give it any higher recommendation.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
vani sivasankar
Solid historical advice from the world's richest man, investor Warren Buffett. This was first published in 1997. This is a collection of letters Buffett wrote to his Berkshire Hathaway shareholders over the years. Buffett is the foremost authority on value investing today. Reading Buffett and about Buffett is considered essential by any serious investor. Buy this book if you want a printed copy. This 5-star advice is now available on the Berkshire Hathaway website so I can only rate the book 3 stars.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Who better than to describe Warren Buffett than Buffett himself? Editor Lawrence Cunningham expertly stiches together Buffett's wisdom and wit (he is genuinely funny) compiled from 20+ years of Berkshire Hathaway annual reports. The triumph is that the result feels like a seamless, oral narrative with Buffett speaking to you one-on-one over hamburgers and Cherry Cokes.
My only problem with the book comes in the form of the rather interminable 24-page introduction penned by Mr. Cunningham. Frankly, I barely made it to the starting line. My advice to you, the prospective reader, is to graze the first *three pages* of the introduction, and then skip right to Buffett. Pages four through 24 feature Mr. Cunningham telling you what Buffett is going to tell you. The only redeeming aspect of this otherwise useless overhead is that it clearly demonstrates the power of Buffett's writing. Cunningham completely succeeds in draining the text dry of Buffett's folksy, accessible style.
Just let Warren tell the story, please.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
terrie hazard
By analyzing the essays Warren Buffet has written over the years, a reader can obtain a general, intuitive, though non-technical guide (for that Intelligent Investor) to Warren Buffet's investment method. Although appearing to be common-sensical in it's folksy mid-western prose, "Essays" explains in succinct and clear detail Buffet's fundamental analysis of businesses. Among these are a strict adherence to full disclosure of accounting transactions, the concept of economic goodwill, and confidence in conservative, factually confident and integrity filled management decisions. A solid, yet gap-filled introduction to Buffet's value-based investing principles.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I generally do not write reviews of products, but I have found the first Cunningham book and this book so helpful in my lifetime that I wanted to post a positive note about them. You can find all of Buffett's letters online and they are a must read, but this book very effectively organizes passages from the letters in a very usable way. I pick it up and read the original every few years to try to absorb more of Buffett's wisdom, and I enjoy reading it each time. Unfortunately, there are no short cuts to copying Warren, but doing your best to emulate him through osmosis is not a terrible idea. So, for what it's worth, this book is definitely worth buying so that you have it around to read now and again. He has an amazing way with words and an even more amazing way with investing-a great combination for educating the masses...
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I cannot imagine that Mr. Warren Buffet is not on any investor's top 10 list of the greatest investors since there were markets in this Country. I would also suggest that a dispassionate appraisal of his performance argues quite eloquently that he is the best to have ever amassed his fortune, and that of his shareholders on Wall Street.
Thanks to the efforts of Mr. Lawrence A. Cunningham readers have access to essays that previously were available primarily to shareholders, and which are organized in this book thematically for the first time. Annual reports are generally easy to come by, however as I write, 1 Share Of Berkshire Hathaway "A" requires $59,900.00, and the "Baby Berkshires" $1,966.00 per share. Many are quick to respond the price is so high as Mr. Buffet has not split the stock, ever. But what is more important is why he has never done this. This book explains his theory on this matter, and dozens of others.
Mr. Buffet has his critics, they range from the idiotic, "he's lucky", "his success allows him to make attractive deals", and to those who feel he missed the money that was made in tech stocks. As for the luck theory, who else has earned 23.8% compounded annually for over 25 years? Winning the lottery is probably more likely an event. As to the attractive deals his wealth is said to facilitate, I guess the answer is, is the questioner serious? He made what he has, his reputation allowed him to have the Federal Government allow Solomon Brothers to continue participating in the bond market based on one thing, his word! This is a man who has rescinded very successful trades because news arrived within days of his buying that could have given the appearance of his having had information others were not privy to.
This book has more useful information and ideas that have been proven over decades than any 10 hot Business Books of the moment. Mr. Buffet has had off years, but he has never gone bust.
One of my favorite stories is when he was hanging out with friends as a kid, his pals were collecting bottles for the deposit. He was collecting bottle caps, sorting them, and determining who was drinking what brand! He clearly was put amongst us for a reason.
On a time invested basis there is no better or more rewarding reading than these essays. No one can match what he has accomplished, why would someone not wish to hear what he has to say on dozens of topics?
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
stacey palevsky
Highly recommended. The best way to access Buffett's thinking, as he has attested that Cunningham's selections, which he approved, are "first class" and the "best book" on the subject. A modern classic updated every five years, this contains the full text of all the important Buffett letters organized by topic. It leaves out material from WB's letters that would be redundant, obsolete, or irrelevant and puts them in a logical order. (To see if you'd prefer reading all the originals in order with all extraneous matter,l read through a few annuals at Berkshire's web site.) This book saves readers enormous time and distraction to obtain profound wisdom neatly arranged.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
cara mia
This book is a great, well organized compilation of Mr. Buffett's famous "Letters to Shareholders" which appear in the annual reports of Berkshire Hathaway.
It has been recently updated to include the letters to shareholders written since the book was first released in 1996, a new introduction has been written, and a new, tougher, blue cover has been added. Mr. Buffett advised shareholders at the 1999 & 2000 Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting if he had to pick a single book describing his methods, this would be the one. It is a great tool to use when trying to compile Mr. Buffett's comments on a particular subject since it is organized by subjects he has discussed in his letters over the years. Trying to find all of his comments on a particular subject throughout the annual reports is a time consuming task when you have to look through many years worth of annual reports. Mr. Cunningham has made this task much simpler with this book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
johanna lawson
To sum up this investor as the greatest investor of our time is correct. You can learn much from the tales of his experience and advice. I can appreciate the time and effort the man takes to select the businesses he buys and leads to economic success. How can the average investor profit from his experiences. I agree with the other reviewers that this book is an outstanding essay for those who want to learn how to select stocks for a value portfolio. Where we differ is that the typical investor he does not have the resources to build a properly diversified portfolio. Value stocks do provide returns in excess of broad market returns but in order to have adequate diversification you must assemble several hundred issues well beyond the resources of the average investor. Further one must have the time and skill to evaluate several thousand issues. I can offer a solution to this problem. I want to recommend for you a book titled How to Make Money in the Stock Market-Buy 2,500 different stocks for $1000 - Pay no Commission This book is a must for those wanting to find out about indexing (passive investing) and why it is the superior method for the small investor (and big one too). This book is an outstanding guide to personal investing. It will be useful to all investors from novices to highly the highly experienced. This book prepares the reader to approach investing from the standpoint of the underlying science. It is the antithesis of a 'get rich quick scheme'.

All aspects of Modern Portfolio Theory and passive (index) investing are explained in a through and easily understood manner. The aspect I like most is that as well as a solid theoretical foundation the book is very practical and shows the reader how to create (and more importantly) and manage over time a successful portfolio. This is a great book- for the beginning investor, it's a great place to start and for the experienced investor there are many valuable suggestions.

It's a shame to think of how much money investors have lost "investing" in the stock market over the years. I wish I had read this little book years ago. The chapter on automatic investing recommends a number of portfolios that follow modern portfolio theory and adjust risk as you age without any effort on the part of the reader at all. Had this book been written years ago and had I followed its directions I would be rich today of that I am certain. Nevertheless I will pursue one of the portfolios recommended and stick to my chosen asset plan.
How to Make Money in the Stock Market-Buy 2,500 Different Stocks-Pay no Commission
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lisa cashmore
This is such a good read, I can't recommend it enough. It has short punchy chapters and is full of Warren Buffetts wit and expertise. His ideas on business management are refreshing and his investing technique is unsurpassed. This has a wonderfully informal style and shows Buffets unique skill, as well as his outlook on other issues. A great read with much to teach. If you like this I highly recommend 'The Warren Buffett Way' By Robert Hagstrom.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
It is certainly true that Mr. Warren Buffet is nothing if not consistent. On June 29, Forbes Magazine will release their latest compilation of the wealthiest people in the world. There are 538 on the list, 269 from America, 56 that disappeared from last year, and many that while still present, have seen their billions cut in half or even a third of what they once enjoyed. Even the wealthiest individual, Mr. Gates, while maintaining his position at number one saw his assets decline. Guess who has billions more than last year? Warren Buffet!
I always enjoy watching those that enjoy being critical of Mr. Buffet. Their charges are absurd, ranging from he never changes his methods, or he did not buy into the technology sector. The year 2000 will be remembered for many things but the amount of money lost in the tech sector will always remain the stuff of which legend is made.
Mr. Buffet did in fact embrace technology as he saw fit, and last year the stock of his company went up by 14.4%. That is a number shared by other companies, however it is closer to what they are worth today as compared to one year ago if they are still alive and limping. We have embraced the 21st century by entering such cutting-edge industries as brick, carpet, insulation and paint, Buffett told his Berkshire Hathaway shareholders this year. "Try to control your excitement." More exciting is the holding's company's stock price in the last year, up 14.4%. Stings a bit to the nay Sayers I would think.
The real treat for investors is that Mr. Lawrence A. Cunningham has earned the respect of Mr. Buffet and Mr. Munger unlike others who report from afar. In this his, "First Revised Edition", Mr. Cunningham has expanded the text by over 10%, and added items like a, "Disposition Table", that are instructive to maximizing the value of what he presents.
The comments I made on the first version need to be revised as follows. One share of Berkshire "A" stock is not $59,900.00; you missed that bargain, Now it will cost you $67,000.00. Up $2,250.00 this past Friday when the markets were soft to say the least. And that bargain "B" Berkshire? Well last time $1,966.00 would have done it, $2,235 will be required now, and it too rose $84.00 this past Friday.
I cannot imagine that Mr. Warren Buffet is not on any investor's top 5 list of the greatest investors since there were markets in this Country. I would also suggest that a dispassionate appraisal of his performance argues quite eloquently that he is the best to have ever amassed his fortune, and that of his shareholders on Wall Street. Thanks to the efforts of Mr. Lawrence A. Cunningham readers have access to essays that previously were available primarily to shareholders, and which are organized in this book thematically for the second time. Annual reports are generally easy to come by, however as I wrote on August 3, 2000, 1 Share Of Berkshire Hathaway "A" required $59,900.00, and the "Baby Berkshires" $1,966.00 per share. Many are quick to respond the price is so high as Mr. Buffet has not split the stock, ever. But what is more important is why he has never done this. This book explains his theory on this matter, and dozens of others. Mr. Buffet has his critics, they range from the idiotic, "he's lucky", to "his success allows him to make attractive deals", and to those who feel he missed the money that was made in tech stocks. As for the luck theory, who else has earned 23.8% compounded annually for over 25 years? Winning the lottery is probably more likely an event. As to the attractive deals his wealth is said to facilitate, I guess the answer is, is the questioner serious? He made what he has, his reputation allowed him to have the Federal Government allow Solomon Brothers to continue participating in the bond market based on one thing, his word! This is a man who has rescinded very successful trades because news arrived within days of his buying/selling that could have given the appearance of his having had information others were not privy to. This book has more useful information and ideas that have been proven over decades than any 10 hot Business Books of the moment. Mr. Buffet has had off years, but he has never gone bust. One of my favorite stories is when he was hanging out with friends as a kid, his pals were collecting bottles for the deposit. He was collecting bottle caps, sorting them, and determining who was drinking what brand! He clearly was put amongst us for a reason. On a time invested basis there is no better or more rewarding reading than these essays. No one can match what he has accomplished, why would someone not wish to hear what he has to say on dozens of topics?
Thank you Mr. Cunningham for gaining this man's trust.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
mary brown
State of mind with quantity than quality. Numbers of aspirations. Markets and industry that expose short term gains vs long term ideology. Dreams that are lead by doing a lot. Opportunity with great open exposure 5,000 conversations with hope and success. Motivate yourself with constant focus working through the hardships.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
There are plenty of books written about Warren Buffett, but what is a better source if not THE source: Warren Buffett. There are just so many lessons to learn from this book. I loved the section where Mr. Buffett explains the Cigar Butts investment style that he practiced before Charlie Munger convinced him to change his style into buying excellent companies at reasonable prices and holding them for a long time. Mr. Buffett is very good at explaining difficult concepts in simple terms that almost anybody can understand.

- Mariusz Skonieczny, author of Why Are We So Clueless about the Stock Market? Learn how to invest your money, how to pick stocks, and how to make money in the stock market
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
crissa jean
Why not read Buffett in his own words, instead of reading books ABOUT Buffett? Many other books about Buffett cover his approach to investing, but his annual letters to his shareholders excerpted in this book cover the same material. His letters are filled with wit and insights, and he's got a home-spun style that lightens up what might otherwise be a very dry subject. If you're not familiar with Buffett's value-based investing approach, then you'll learn about it here, and how it's helped him average an eye-popping 25% average annual return for 35 years running. For those already familiar with Buffett's approach, it's still enjoyable to read him in his own words. Highly recommended.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
In these essays, Buffett wraps his hands around almost every "how to" analysis of an investment concept or "problem" imaginable...and succinctly and clearly "opens up", unravels, and reveals solutions and answers to them all. You don't understand Balance Sheets, Cash Flow Analyses, Income Statements...and "what in the world" these things can tell you about a company...and whether or not to buy its stock? Buffett puts you inside HIS mind, using HIS thinking and analytical prowess, and illustrates just how HE does it...and allows YOU, too, to grasp the complexity of the issue and to understand WHAT it reveals about a company and its management. After reading these essays you WILL understand more about some of these "mysterious" accounting statements, and the unfolding stories that they reveal. I have been a serious amateur investment analyst for years, studied accounting, taught university level Corporate Finance, and made private corporate investments professionally, and NEVER have I seen so clearly drawn HOW to understand and use accounting reports for smarter investing. Buffett is an artist! BUT...a warning...if you are not REALLY interested in learning how to invest smarter, how to, really, analyze and understand a company, and its management, through its published accounting reports, don't bother to read these essays. You will probably get bored, or your eyes may glaze over. But...I hope that you enjoy them as much as I did! Joe Dean Phipps
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
What I really know about stocks, I've learned with Mr.Buffett. Everything I've learned before,like efficient markets theory, technical analysis, beta coefficient, and a thousand more concepts, I've just disposed all!... Mr. Cunningham has got a brilliant thought: collecting, organizing and presenting us all the relevant investment ideas of Mr. Buffett, just like he wrote them, when reporting to Berkshire's shareholders. The result is this wonderfull and exciting masterpiece, which I totally recommend.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
danielle rateau
Good because you can feel it is by Warren Buffett himself. It's like reading any great book ¡V presentation style matches perfectly with the underlying idea. While you are reading all the investment rules on the book, you know what an investor Warren Buffett is. He is so good at financial literacy; he looks for true value in a business just like an honest man looks for true love before he promotes himself from Single to Married; he is confident on his own faith; he has great vision on the kingdom of investment¡K They are not only investment rules of Warren Buffett, but also personality of Warren Buffett.
If you want to know how Warren Buffett looks at a business (or an investment), you must read this book. If you want to keep dreaming about becoming a billionaire overnight, go back to your Wall Street brokers. They have plenty of dreams on every single equity listed on any market on earth ¡V of course you need to provide commission for sweet dreams¡K sometimes nightmare as well!! Yes, pay for nightmare. Look at those who were advised to buy in Enron before the meltdown.
You won¡¦t find any stock picking advise from this book. What you will find is a lesson on becoming a true investor rather than a speculator.
[P.S. In one of the essay (written years ago) in the book, Warren Buffett even pointed out how American Oil Giant make use of the ¡§Creative Accounting¡¨skills in inflating their earnings. So, he has the ability to know the future? Definitely not. He is just an honest wise man who loves the truth!]
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ben orozco
I read a couple of books about Warren Buffet and a few of BH's annual reports before. Nothing beats the Sage in his own words. This book is a condensation of the Sage's wisdom. Extremely educational. Topics well laid out. Makes me look at certain issues from the unconventional perspective - i.e. the Sage's perspective. This book is the bible on investing, corporate finance, corporate governance and accounting. But I don't think business students should read this book or BH's annual reports - lest they doubt their professors too much or that most textbooks have to be rewritten. If however you are no longer in school and you read only one book on investing, this is The Book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This book contains a wonderful and well-organized collection of Warren Buffett's essays related to the world of business. Mr. Buffett is widely known as one of the most articulate, successful and intelligent businesspeople of our time.
While all of Mr. Buffett's writings are worth reading, this book represents a helpful distillation and codification of the general principles of business in general, and investing in particular. This book is well worth a read.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
stephen richter
Crazyman's Economics

Warren Buffet is a true success story when it comes to American entrepreneurs. If you follow his advice, your chances of making money in the market will increase, but you're still gambling on a game of chance. Buffett himself admits that the greater the motion, the smaller the return to the investor.

In the end, we should celebrate Buffett's success and his willingness to share his advice. But please remember, that Buffett's advice will not make you any richer than a book on basketball by Michael Jordan will make you a hall-of fame basketball player.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
cayt o neal
Unfortunately the living investor legend Buffett himself only writes in Berkshire Hathaway investor letters. Luckily they contain lots of high quality descriptions of his views. And luckily Lawrence Cunningham compiled them in Buffets original writing along a diverse set of topics. It is pleasure pure and value pure. Thanks to both of you.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Given Warren Buffett's candid and witty writing style, I don't understand why one would rather read those lousy interpretation of WB's shareholders' letters than read the original shareholders' letters.

But, if you want to get the gem of those shareholders' letters directly, you must read this excellent collection of essays. The editor does a great job in collecting and organizing WB's letters in a way that readers can more easily come to understand WB's investment philosophy in his own words.

Anyway, you've got to go to Berkshire Hathaway's website to read the original. I'm sure you will enjoy it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This is such a good read, I can't recommend it enough. It has short punchy chapters and is full of Warren Buffetts wit and expertise. His ideas on business management are refreshing and his investing technique is unsurpassed. This has a wonderfully informal style and shows Buffets unique skill, as well as his outlook on other issues. A great read with much to teach. If you like this I highly recommend 'The Warren Buffett Way' By Robert Hagstrom.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
marcella demars
Who wants to read monotonous, stale cracker investment advice? Finally! A book that presents sophisticated business principles in cleverly simple form. Cunningham delivers Buffett like a piece of delectable chocolate cake - an entertaining, quick, and purely edible read! The best is yet to come for anyone who reads this book and applies Buffett's direct, common sense investment philosophy.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jesper kold
Though I'm not a fan of Buffett, and I usually feel that his "wisdom" goes unchallenged in the media, in business circles and in academia because of his stature as an investor, this compilation is a great way to get a distilled collage of his annual report dissertations about many interesting subjects.
Of course one could just go to the website and read the reports, but the selection and organization makes it worth the price. It is very interesting to read some analysis of market turmoil times and think that you are reading about the present, to then at the footnote see that it was written 10 or 20 years ago. It puts today's economic crisis in perspective, and certainly makes the 2008 recession look like one of those opportunities that comes once every 20 years, and not like the apocalyptic event it is perceived to be in some quarters.
The fact that the book is the best compilation of one of the highest-regarded modern business philosophers earns the book 5 stars. The main ideas (and to me the most endearing) are that a corporation is a partnership and stock-holders, boards and managers should run companies with this "family-owned-for-the-long-term" attitude; that investing is about finding good businesses, with good and honest management, to be held for the long term, bought at discounted prices (with margin of safety), and that this should deliver wonderful results no matter what the vagaries of the market, political or social environment are.
But if Buffett was not a muti-deca-billionaire, some of his ideas would (and certainly should) be challenged with more vehemence, because his stature and his influence in an Obama administration could permeate the regulatory environment and infect the intellectual drinking well of policy-makers and rule-writers.
Buffett's analyses, metaphores, fables, simils, allegories and rants about subjects such as derivatives, low-grade bonds, financial advisory, all-stock mergers, etc could be serioursly challenged by an intellectually courageous business thinker that wouldn't mind going against a luminary (and investing the time and risking the reputation of challenging an Oracle.) Some of these challenges are not that difficult, and the internal logic that Buffett uses in some instances is flawed (and simply demonstrably so.) This is not the place to expound on it, but one of the pleasures of reading this compilation, is the excercise of mentally challenging Buffett.
On the matter of style, one can say that part of what makes Buffett's business reports memorable is his hokey style where he parenthetically inserts (often times bad or crude) jokes and aphorisms. But I was surprised by the predominance of mating references (quite often so irrelevant and unnecessary that they seemed forced into the essay). If this phenomenon is not simply the selection preference of the editor, but Buffett's actual thought frequency, it would be interesting to see a psychological profile of the man in light of his personal biography (he as much says in one of the essays that to a guy sitting on $130 million, an older woman should hold no attraction.)
As a last thought on the matter of style, just like I distrust a politician that tells me he is just a regular Joe, I distrust a highly sophisticated investor, that operates complex businesses and manages intricate transactions, and speaks of it all in home-spun, dumbed-down, folksy speech. For all his diatribes against derivatives, he uses them frequently (and profitably), for his disdain of junk-bonds, he "invests" in them, for his "aversion" to speculation he has made a lot of money speculating in silver, in foreign currency, in default swaps, etc. And for all his high-horse-ridding about accounting transparency and operational honesty, he is rather silent on his essays about the alledged improper insurance transactions his company was involved with in his dealings with AIG, but more troublesome is his "throwing under the bus" of his insurance executives (several of them convicted), by claiming himself too far removed from the operations to know about those transactions: Either a lie, or a deriliction of duty (to use his own phrase).
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
rachel householder
You can learn more from this book about money and business than from pretty much any other source of similar size. The mystery of why Buffett abhors tech stocks seems to be that they don't fit within the pretty tough standards he looks for in investments--products people need that can be sold at prices that generate steady and high profits. I guess from reading this tidy little book of treasures that Buffett is awaiting the inevitable shake out in the internet world before he'll allocate capital to it. It is too soon to tell which are the winning companies and which the losing companies--right now they are all losers. But some will emerge as winners, it's just that right now trying to pick which ones is more like going to Las Vegas than to Wall Street. This book sheds a lot of light not just on the traditional good investments but on these new kinds of investments too. I got the book as a gift and am really grateful to the person who gave it to me--I'm going to get some as gifts for people I like a lot too.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
beetz criado
If you only buy one investing / stock book, this is the one.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This book, a collection of Buffett's annual reports, provides a cheap and pleasant education about corporate finance and investing. These essays show the talent behind Buffett's success.

In a recent 48 Hours interview, Buffett said that of all the many books out there about him, it was this one that best described how he thinks. He was right. Like Winston Churchill, Abraham Lincoln, and many other significant figures, Buffett writes better than the many people who write about him.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
brian lynam
I used this as the textbook for an advanced corporate finance class. I must say that it is really easy to read, but at the same time it has so many layers of interpretations that to fully understand what Warren is saying you haev to read more than once. My class was based on interpreting those matter-of-fact statements one passes by quickly without noticing how much depth there is to the statement. I found the book very enlightening in terms of what to look for at the corporate level.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
melinda franco
The Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporate America, Second Editionmade its debut at BRK 2008 annual meeting. It is a definitive and clear source on Buffett's views, and an excellent summary/interpretation of his letters to the shareholders. I believe this is the best work on Buffett written to date (I read all of them). If you want to read only one book on Buffett, this should be it. It is also Buffett's favorite book about himself.

Why buy the 2nd addition instead of, or in addition to the first? Invaluable new additions (among the new gems are sections on audit committees, Buffett's views on debt, and mergers) make this book ever more pertinent to the current corporate environment and today's investment practices. This is a must-read.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
carol mcgrath
Don't take my advice - listen to the Whip himself. He recognized this book as the best business investment book. The Whip is a genuis but conveying that to a reader is something different. Cunningham's writing is as good as the Whip's investment expertise. This book is for EVERYONE not just for investment pros. Cunningham - keep up the good work! upsiderisk@aol.com
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
kylie tracey
Buffett is not shy about spreading his, almost common sense, approach to investing and deal making - this book is a great way to get inside the mind of the Oracle of Omaha. Pair this one up with something timeless as the Intelligent Investor and you really can't go wrong if you follow the wisdom contained therein.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Lucid and brilliant, a clear lesson on capital allocation. The only objection would be the repeated content, but truthfully it helped the ideas sink in a bit.

Thank you for editing this collection Professor Cunningham.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This book has been put together very well, and organized with easily accessable topics from unorganized yearly letters. I can easily look up information from this book to guide me on my stock market leaps and bounds.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lindsay andros
This book is a collection of letters written by Warren Buffet. I learned a great deal about how to think about a business or investment in "more real" accounting terms. This book helps me create a reference for investing in stocks or in valuing a business.

I will be suprised if you read this book and are able to put it down.. !
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
joy cervantes
This excellent book was hard to put down. Mr. Buffett is as innately talented a writer as he is a businessman. The book funny, entertaining and highly informative, is sure to add significantly to the knowledge of any aspiring investor. Buffett takes topics like corporate accounting malfeasance and makes you laugh at them while at the same time providing profound insight into the inner workings of the corporate enviornment. This title is definatly one you will want to own.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
ali winter
This will be a favorite for some time to come. I've been a big fan of Mr. Buffets for sometime and I was completely caught off guard by his indepth knowledge of the business world. While I knew his song writing abilities where unmatched, I had no idea he had such a business mind.
I give this one four shots :) We Parrotheads can learn alot from this man. I was just a little disappointed that he didn't include an appendix with his lyrics. That would have given this book a solid 5 shots.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
andriy rushchak
This book very effectively organizes Warren Buffet's essays. Cunningham extracts selected passages of Buffet's essays from 1979 to 2000 and organizes them into chapters. This is a great summary of Buffet's essays and well worth reading. All of Buffet's letters for Berkshire Hathaway shareholders can be seen on the Berkshire Hathaway website.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
juan pablo
Okay so you may not have the same capital as he does to purchase things, but you can still apply some simple basics into your investments. Look for something simple but makes money, look for good management, and look for low debt. If you are a business owner, you can also learn how to position your company to be a perfect "buy out". Overall a good read. Other investment books to suggest is Investing, Without Losing (ISBN 0978834607 - NOT on amazn on other stores).
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
This, obviously based on it's subject matter at hand, Warren Buffet's investment insight, is going to be a great piece of reading material. However, unless you feel that annotated excerpts of the above stated subject matter with no valuable addition thereof is worth the purchase price of this book then all of the information contained therein, and a lot more in fact, is available for free as public information from the official web site of Berkshire Hathaway. This is, shamelessly, little more than a collection of Warren Buffet's public statements and shareholder letters reorganised into some form of faux writings by "Warren Buffet on Corporate Lessons" which the content was originally none of, but was rather a diversified thesis of value released over the years in the form of investment portfolio terms, yet has been construed here to be such.

Just read Buffet's original, and thereby unabridged, works in the exact manner which the man of said wisdom would read them himself and as he intended, for free!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ivy feinstein
As always Mr. Buffett manages to do an excellent job at explaining seemingly complex financial terms in a simple and logical way.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
jim demicco
The reader of this book will do far better by going to the website of Warren Buffett's company where all annual reports are and where another person has not chopped the information up. There are no new insights in this book from the collator and although one could argue the book saves time I believe the reader will find the complete annual reports more rewarding.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
brenda ellis
I have been talking to Professor Cunningham and apparently, this book is not "out of print" as the store states (Third party private sellers are selling the book for as much as $99) but rather, just delayed in printing. He will have the next shipment of books to the store soon, and it will be retailing for US$25. This should appear on the store very soon, so just keep checking back!
For bulk orders, please contact Professor Cunningham directly at cunninlb@mail.bc.edu.
Hope this help!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I work for a financial services company, and I'm subjected to corporate gobbledegook on a daily basis. Warren Buffett gets to the point. His explanations of financial transactions seem so effortless, I can't imagine how others get so confused and obtuse. Here's a mind worth delving in to, and this book lets you sit on the shoulder of a modern genius to see how he thinks. Good stuff.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Some who read the book complained that it's possible to find the same information on Warren's website. Although I have enjoyed the shareholder's letters, there is something to be said about an easy to pickup, and read, compilation of some of his best ideas.
The way I look at it -- $25 is a small price to pay for the gems which you encounter in this book. One paragraph, even one sentence, could potentially change the way in which one invests and could make a significant change in your long term wealth!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jonas madden connor
Excellent book that reviews the basic investing strategies of Warren Buffett. I have read many of his annual reports and they are excellent writings. But this book puts everything of "How to invest" in one place. It doesn't, however, go over the details on buying companies at less than intrinsic value. Buffettology goes over the numbers in a simple fashion (which would help any beginner). I highly recommend this book, and of course his stock
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
gabrielle dilorenzo
The editor didn't seem to do more than print the essays under appropriate topics. Little to no organization of the material. Completely descriptive work. Decent publication.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
I'm actually still reading this, but I found Warren Buffett surprisingly easy to read. He speaks in a very simple common language which was entirely refreshing.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
one fly chica
In the CNBC Liz Clayman interview with Buffett, he stated that of all the books written about him, this one is his favorite...it is an excellent read.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
These are the actual words penned by Buiffett. Not as dry as one would think, he's actually a wonderful writer. The Oracle of Omaha can turn a phrase and while parts of this are slow going, I enjoyed it throughly.

I heartily recommend this book for those desiring wealth. I also strongly recommend The Millionaire Mind by Tom Stanley. The Millionaire Mind
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Buffett and Cunningham have the touch of explaining in a smart and common sense way the basics and some "advanced" lessons on how to invest. Ben Graham seems to have had an impact on both. I became exposed to this book in a college class on finance and have to say it is the most interesting and valuable educational tool I've ever been assigned to read. Thanks prof!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
At today's 2000 annual meeting of Berkshire Hathaway, Warren Buffett answered a shareholder's question about good books to read by saying this one is the best book on investment philosophy and that Cunningham did a great job. Buffett had said a similar thing a couple of years ago at the annual meeting right after the book first came out. I think he is still right.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
wendi igo
This book is a compilation of writings from Warren Buffet's annual shareholder letters to his Berkshire investors. These letters are available for free download at [...] but this book is well worth the money because it compresses the writings in these letters and organizes them into principles Buffet uses.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Warrens essays show that a man can succeed beyond imagination adherring to some basics in evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of a company. A personal comment, Warren is honest beyond belief,and treats people with a great deal of respect. We have known Warren for over 40 years and consider him to be one of our best friends.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
If you want to read Warren Buffett's thoughts from his letters to shareholders, organized by topic to compile similar thoughts from different years, this book and Peter Bevelin's "A Few Lessons for Investors and Managers From Warren Buffett" are the books to own. There is a collection of all of Buffett's letters coming out in May (compiled and edited by Max Olson) if you want to go from start to finish, but for those that want to main ideas compiled wonderfully by Mr. Cunningham, this is a great choice.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jaci ms darcy reads
Want the equivalent of an MBA - read this book! Skip the first 26 pages and get right into reading Buffet directly. After reading the rest of the book go back and read the first 26 pages for a great summary.

A must read for anyone interested in business.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
steven slaughter
This collection of essays did a great service for understanding Buffett's investment phylosophy. As we get familiar with Buffett's approach, however, we would expect an improved re-arrangement of his ideas in a more logical fashion. Of course, this book is still much better than those with simply quotations or simple categorization.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
helen callaghan
This book contains the Investment philosophy of Benjamin Graham and Philip A Fisher combined. If I had known this earlier, I would not have bought the 'Intelligent Investor' and 'Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits'

Word of caution: if your looking to make quick BIG bucks in Wall Street this book is not for you.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
I love this book and it is required reading in any investor's library.

For me, this is like the bible, the Koran and Bhagavad Gita of investing.

My only frustration is, the editor is not updating this regularly, he should do this on an annual basis.

There is also an need to bring this book out in Kindle format.

Thank you
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Warren Buffet is a true American legend in investing. His words, if followed, can only lead to solid investment performance.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ashlie hogan
Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporate America is a compendium of business issues that are collated in a brilliant manner, that showcases Warren Buffet wit, candor and business acumen within his dissertations that make this book a riveting read.

5 stars!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Buffett has a very uniquly apt understanding of many modern business practices and investment strategy along with the ability to explain these concepts in a down to earth framework. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has ever felt they didn't understand what was going on in corporate america.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
What can I say except for the book is by god himself. It is an easy and interesting read. highly recommended to all those who want to get an idea on how to invest in stocks successfully!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
A wonderful collection of the wisdom of Buffett. Timely publication. It's refreshing to read his views of the S&L crisis of the later 1980's, and to see the resemblance of the situations then and now. Some people never change!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
How did he amass such grand-scale knowledge of economic systems and the global market? I read this hoping to find out, and didn't entirely, but made some progress.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
The best book on investment ever. Had a lot of humour as well as a great education on investments. Very simple, easy to read and understand. It is also a combination of Fisher and Benjamin Graham.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jenny dodgson
This is a collection of valuable insights on how to determine real economic value, as opposed to accounting value, accounting gimmicks or financial nonsense.

All that and some humor too. Grat book!
★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆
I bought this Book because I read in the reviews that the author organized the topics. But after reading it and reading the Shareholders letter, I learn more from the shareholders letter because it discusses with the decision in assessing companies. It book is helpful to those who doesn't have time to spend reading all the shareholders letter.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
barbara manning
This is a great book for people to understand the relationship between Corporate governance and business wellness. a must read for a long term investor.
★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
charlie corisepa
I am not sure for which audience this book was written, but i cannot get any useful content out of it. The book seems extremely dragging, and completely out of touch. I've been trading stocks for a year now, and i am very hungry for knowledge and new information to become a better stock market investor, but i had to stop reading this book half way into it, I just felt i was completely wasting my time. If you are relatively new in trading stocks, i personally don't recommend this book.
★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
you should not buy this collection of Warren Buffett's letters to investors. You should instead visit the Berkshire Hathaway website where all of these essays are available for free and invest the $22 in a good company following the principles outlined in these essays.

If these essays were not so easily available, this collection would definitely be worth buying.
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If Buffett really wanted to do something to help fix this country, he should take several hundred mil or so and get some independent candidate elected the next prez, JUST TO SHOW what $$$ can do. The system would get changed instantly, and is a much more effective method than talking about how low your taxes are. Talk's cheap, and the powers that be can afford to ignore it, even if it's coming from the richest mouth around. But if he were to put his money where his mouth is, that's something they couldn't just ignore.
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one can easily have access to the material on the berkshire hathaway's website (or print them out and staple them).
don't waste your money...pricey book...way over the intrinsic value. ironic that a person interested in financial acumen would spend money on this book.
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kristin kennedy
I was very pleased with both the condition of the book I ordered as well as the delivery and service with which it was handled. The book was brand new and arrived in excellent condition - carefully packaged. It arrived hardly a week after I ordered it under standard shipping conditions. I will definitely use the store as a reliable shopping source for the future.
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Good book! Definitely one of the bests written about Warren Buffett.

<a href="[...]">Ocean Blue</a>
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eric adams
I bought a book by this author before and the book could not be understood because the business language was just too much
for someone new to investing like me. However, when I read about Warren Buffett from the perspective of Mary Buffett and David
Clark is very easy and very profitable to read. If you want a good Buffett book buy The Tao Of Warren Buffett by Mary Buffett and
David Clark.

Cunningham thinks he is so clever to delegate the responsibility of the quality of the book to Warren Buffett's letters to his
shareholders and does nothing to clarify the meaning of those letters. I don't think he even understands what those letters are about
but he sure knows how to paste the right cover with Warren Buffett being the writer. It's plain ridiculous. I consider his book lousy and
just lazy clever work to make money. Don't waste your money or your time buying his books.

If you are a millionaire stock investor who seeks complexity maybe the book might be for you. But if your'e not then buy all books written about
Warren Buffett by Mary Buffett and David Clark. Those books are really a masterpiece because I am making thousands of dollars with Warren
Buffett's knowledge. Again, they're easy to read and very cheap if you buy used.

Stay away from Cunningham. I regret deeply having bought one of his books. They're a total rip off. Even if I was a millionaire I wouldn't buy them.

Mr. Cunningham you should learn from Mary Buffett .

Dr. Alfredo A. Atwater
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jane smith
Warren is famous for doing controlled interviews with "friendly" press that never challenge him. He spouts the acceptable Anti-White and Left wing views that the elites like to hear. This book offers nothing but lazy, meaningless observations from a guy who can't seem to tear himself away from a camera lens.
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random creativity
If these essays advise how Buffett, crony capitalist extraordinaire, manages to manipulate politicians, I missed it. Guess who lobbied for the TARP bailout, and who also benefited? Who complains taxes aren't high enough, but doesn't just send in a check?
Please Rate Lessons for Corporate America - The Essays of Warren Buffett
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