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Stocks B / Berkshire Hathaway


Subject:  2007 Annual Meeting Notes Date:  5/6/2007  12:49 PM
Author:  mhirschey Number:  129851 of 219507

I got home from the 2007 Annual meeting at a reasonable time last night, but was so exhausted that I decided to wait until this morning to post my thoughts and expressions. I've purposely not read any prior posts on the meeting so as to keep my perceptions independent.


1. The Borsheim's cocktail party on Friday night is getting better and better. Lots of food and lots and lots of free drinks were flowing. The music was good both inside the mall and in the tent. Business was brisk at the jewelry counters. Borsheim's benefits a great deal from the meeting trade, obviously.

2. Ancillary cocktail parties are growing and growing. Whitney Tilson and lots of others are using the Berkshire event as an effective marketing tool.

3. My most eager students were in line by 11:00 pm. Quite a group were there by 3:00 am. I slept in and didn't arrive until 4:30 am. Light rain kept down the number of early arrivals, so it was hard to judge the amount of interest among the “hard core,” but I detect no slackening of interest.

4. There was a huge crowd at the meeting. 27,000 were in the Quest Center, including the adjacent AV rooms. Despite its size, it was a quiet crowd. Applause through out the meeting was subdued.

5. Nobody asked about a share split, which kind of surprised me actually. That's a “groaner” question most years. However, Buffett has converted a bunch of his shares from A to B in order to facilitate sales tied to gift giving. That's explicit recognition that the B shares have greater marketability. At this point, I see no point in the dual class structure.

6. The crowd seemed as interested as ever in the products offered in the Quest Exposition Center. Of course, the freebies are long gone, but there was lots of trade going on. Shareholders seemed as eager to buy See's Candies at ridiculously high prices as