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Stocks B / Berkshire Hathaway


Subject:  FAQ: Berkshire and Tech Investing Date:  3/20/2000  10:26 PM
Author:  Rubic Number:  23484 of 226006

FAQ: Berkshire and Tech Investing

Preamble: The purpose of this FAQ is to address one of the most common posts on the Berkshire board, "Why won't Warren Buffett invest in technology?" I suspect that much of this misinformation is perpetuated and reinforced by the media because it makes good copy, i.e. the irony of the "World's Greatest Investor" as a technophobe. The FAQ will attempt to explain this issue, which gets exhaustive attention on the Berkshire board.

1. Why won't Warren Buffett invest in technology?

(Or in the words of a poster on another board, admonishing Buffett: "Well damn it, get off your lazy butt and learn something about it!!!")

When Mr. Buffett says he doesn't understand technology, he's being a bit disingenuous. Don't fall for that Omaha "aw shucks" routine.

Berkshire was recently ranked by PC Week magazine as 12th among the top 100 leading-edge users of Internet technology out of 2,600 companies surveyed.

When Mr. Buffett claims he doesn't understand technology, he means that it's too difficult for him to predict reliable revenues for any significant period of time. He is also well aware (perhaps more aware than most people realize) of the threats that technology offers to companies' long-term advantages.

It may be worthwhile to read Buffett's own words about technology before dismissing him as a luddite. He's thought longer and harder about th