Warren Buffett News: The New ‘Buffett Rule’ Everyone Is Ignoring

BERKSHIRE HATHAWAYMedia General announces cuts (RichmondBizSense)
Fresh off its massive deal with Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, Media General is cleaning house. The downtown-based company that until recently was the parent of the Richmond Times-Dispatch on Tuesday announced layoffs of 75 employees as it reinvents itself as a TV-centric media firm. After selling almost all of its newspapers this summer to Berkshire, Media General consists of 18 TV stations and some web-based businesses.

The New ‘Buffett Rule’ Everyone Is Ignoring (American)
Taking our eyes off the overwhelmingly important goal of returning the economy to robust growth is a waste of valuable time. Warren Buffett, recently expressing his disgust with the debt ceiling debate, condensed a profound truth about our federal debt into just a few short words. Although this gem of wisdom (below) deserves to be elevated to the status of a new “Buffett Rule,” that will not happen in the foreseeable future, because both presidential candidates are choosing to ignore it. Why? Apparently, they would rather not complicate the economic debate, especially during election season. Nonetheless, the new “Buffett Rule” deserves some airtime, because both candidates have some explaining to do.

Buffett’s Berkshire gets US nod for Industrial Insulation deal (Reuters)
Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway has received U.S. antitrust approval for a transaction with Industrial Insulation Group LLC, the Federal Trade Commission said on Tuesday. Industrial Insulation Group, also known as IIG, started in 2002 as a joint venture when Calsilite Group and Berkshire’s Johns Manville Corp combined manufacturing capabilities for several of their product lines.

Warren Buffett Wants Your Mortgage Payments: Street Whispers (TheStreet)
Few Americans are aware of it, but Berkshire Hathaway(BRK-B) has been quietly positioning itself to take over an important role played by Bank of America(BAC_) in the mortgage market. Berkshire is in a bidding war with Nationstar Mortgage Holdings (NSM_) for the assets of ResCap, the nation’s fifth-largest mortgage servicer, behind Wells Fargo(WFC_), Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase(JPM_) and Citigroup(C_).

Before Warren Buffett, there was Sol Price (NewJerseyNewsRoom)
Before Warren Buffett, there was Sol Price. Another multimillionaire with the decency to side with the not-so-rich 99 percent instead of with the obscenely rich 1 percent. …Sol Price (1916-2009) was born in New York City; his family name may have been Press or Preuss, not the serendipitous “Price.” The family moved to San Diego in 1920 and Price became a lawyer. He pioneered the “warehouse” store, where members can buy merchandise cheap and in bulk. (Sam Walton of Wal-Mart admitted he had borrowed much from Price.) Price’s first enterprise was called FedMart; later he started the Price Clubs — which Costco eventually purchased. Price’s family now runs an offshoot, the Price Clubs, which have 26 or so outlets in the Caribbean and Central America.

How to make money on your way to work (MarketWatch)
In 2009, when most investors were gnawing at their fingernails and keeping their money hidden under mattresses, Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway made its biggest investment ever. For the princely sum of $34 billion, Berkshire (US:BRK.A) (US:BRK.B) acquired Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp., the second-largest U.S. freight railroad. Since then, Burlington Northern’s profit has doubled and its 32,000 miles of tracks have delivered the stable returns Buffett had hoped for.

Top U.S. Solar Company Profits Amid Red For Industry: Energy (Bloomberg)
First Solar Inc. (FSLR) Chairman Mike Ahearn has found the best way to make money from photovoltaics is to sell whole power plants to Warren Buffett and NextEra Energy Inc. (NEE) instead of competing with China on panel sales. The biggest U.S. solar company is forecast to report the only profit in the second quarter among the 17 companies in the BI Global Large Solar index, according to estimates collected by Bloomberg. The rest, led by Suntech Power Holdings Co. (STP) of China, are predicted to have losses.

Peddies’ Lambplan a safe bet (WeeklyTimesNow)
James Peddie doesn’t strike you as a betting man – he knows the performance of his sheep too well to gamble. But he reckons even well-known American investor Warren Buffett could see a dollar in the value of performance-recorded breeding sheep at the moment. James and his wife, Lucie, run a 6700-ewe self-replacing maternal flock near Penshurst that has increased pregnancy scanning percentages in 13-month-old maiden ewes from 93 per cent in 2009 to 128 per cent last year.

Should Investors Buy JPMorgan’s Promise? (TheStreet)
In wondering whether or not to make an investment case for JPMorgan Chase(JPM), I’m reminded of something Warren Buffett said: “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five seconds to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.” I think this is exceptionally true for JPMorgan. It is fair to say there is a considerable amount of regret from its management, in particular from CEO Jamie Dimon. The company earned Wall Street’s respect for managing the credit crisis much better than its peers including Bank of America(BAC) and Citigroup(C).