Perhaps other than the release of The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham, The Crash and its Aftermath by Barrie Wigmore, or Quality of Earnings by Thornton O’Glove, no document will be more willing to lend itself to knowledge extractions than the release of Berkshire Hathaway’s 50th annual letter tomorrow morning at 8 AM. Fifty years ago, Warren Buffett took control of Berkshire from Seabury Stanton after a fractious arrangement—Buffett agreed to dispose of all his Berkshire stock to Seabury personally for $11.50, and they reached the deal orally with a handshake. When the paperwork arrived, Stanton only agreed to pay Buffett $11.375 for his share of the stock. Reputations are a funny thing—Stanton could have been the greatest guy in the world, a loving husband, father, and citizen—but his only place in the history books involves lying over $0.125 per share of BRK stock.
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