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John McCoy  

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  • The Number 1 Risk To Berkshire Hathaway [View article]
    Interesting theory, but you have to remember that Berkshire is not run in the same manner as most other large corporations. The Exxons, Walmarts and Microsofts of the world are all large corporate entities, and the larger they become, the harder it is to move and grow, much like a person who keeps getting fatter and fatter - sooner or later they are unable to walk.

    Berkshire is different in that, for the most part, it is a collection of smaller, operating companies running independently of the mother ship, with very little in the way of directives and control coming out of Omaha. This structure pretty much allows the individual management teams to concentrate on growing and improving profitability in their own little corners of the empire. And remember, Berkshire's operating companies and management teams tend to be among the best in their respective industries! Remember what Buffett said shortly after the BNSF aquisition - "Now Matt Rose doesn't have to worry about satisfying Wall Street and can concentrate on running a railroad." And that's what they do, grow their businesses, improve profitiability, and make small, bolt on aquisitions of their own.

    This unique structure also allows Omaha to do what it does best. Rather than spending his time making decisions about how to run a railroad, or a utility company, or a car insurance company, Buffett is free to spend his time picking stocks, investing the insurance float and stalking the next elephant sized aquisition. This is what makes Berkshire a different animal than any of the other companies you compare it to, and is the reason why Berkshire will continue to grow larger and stronger where others sputter.
    May 6, 2014. 07:17 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Southside Bancshares And OmniAmerican Bancorp Merger Insights [View article]
    I've been waiting for a chance to get into SBSI for quite a while, and this looks like it. I'll be watching to see how it moves early in the week before deciding when to start a position. Thanks for the great write up.
    May 3, 2014. 07:44 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Time to buy Berkshire is now says Barclays [View news story]
    "It's far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price."

    -Warren Buffett

    I called a buy on BRK-B just before the Burlington split and have been buying it on and off ever since. BRK-B, and my newest long position, MKL, are going to be very long term holds in my portfolio.
    May 1, 2014. 07:00 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Berkshire Hathaway: A Calculation Of Its Intrinsic Value [View article]
    Book value and intrinsic value are two entirely different things, and Buffett goes to great lengths to distinquish the difference between the
    two. Book value reflects the total of all the assets of the company at current carrying costs on the books, minus liabilities. Some of these assets have been carried on Berkshire's balance sheet for decades, and when calculating book value, are valued at their original aquisition costs.

    Intrinsic value reflects the actual real and current value of those assets, which is MUCH higher in most cases than the decades old carrying costs they are carried on the books at. IMHO, intrinsic value on the BRK-B shares is closer to $160 per share, or $240K per share for BRK-A.

    Buffett did set somewhat of a floor on the stock with his 1.2 x book value statement, but IMO that reflects intrinsic value minus a significant margin of safety that one would expect from Buffett. Remember, price is what you pay, value is what you get.
    Apr 29, 2014. 03:37 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Identifying Thriving Small Banks Using Federal Reserve, FDIC Data [View article]
    I like small community banks, and I've been looking at CFFI and a few others. I'm adding CFFI to my watch list, which also includes small banks WASH, SBSI and BHB. I'd be interested to hear your thoughs on those as well. Excellent article Matt, thank you.
    Apr 5, 2014. 03:27 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Ford Motor: More Positives Going Into April [View article]
    In addition to record Fusion sales and strong F-Series sales, Ford also reported very strong growth across the Lincoln brand, up 31% over last year. Growth in Lincoln sales is very important, and should help add to our momentum. Stay long F, we should see $20 by the end of the year. Good article, thank you.
    Apr 1, 2014. 04:21 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • What Is Berkshire Hathaway Really Worth? A Comprehensive Look [View article]
    I missed your conservative value of $154.00 for the BRK-B shares by .29 cents (my current target sell price is $154.29). Great article, thank you!
    Mar 27, 2014. 08:16 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • What Is Berkshire Hathaway Really Worth? A Comprehensive Look [View article]
    "There's also the problem that BRK is a very investor-unfriendly company."

    How on Earth does anyone consider a 19.7% compounded return over the last 48 years to be "shareholder unfriendly"?
    Mar 27, 2014. 08:10 PM | 20 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Ford Motor: This Ridiculous Valuation Can't Last Forever [View article]
    Don't forget China, which is a small but very fast growing and important market for Ford. With strong US sales continuing, new models being rolled out and setting up for 2015, a recovering European market, and a small but fast growing China/Asian market, Ford is an excellent long term investment, and one of my top positions along with BAC and BRK-B. And with a current 3.3% dividend yield, they're paying you to wait. Ford is a buy on any weakness throughout 2014.
    Mar 16, 2014. 01:35 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • This Time It Is Different - Americans Are More Pessimistic [View article]
    Look for snack food companies like PEP and MDLZ to do well due to the "munchie factor."
    Mar 8, 2014. 02:51 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What's Wrong With Prospect Capital? [View article]
    Excuse me, I meant if it stays under $11. Under $10 would be quite the deal.
    Mar 7, 2014. 04:09 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Buffett's Big 5 Stocks: Bank Of America A Keeper? [View article]
    You and me both Lordbru, good job buying that low and staying long. I'm thinking we're going to see the first dividend increase next quarter.
    Mar 6, 2014. 09:42 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What's Wrong With Prospect Capital? [View article]
    I'm long PSEC and I agree with the author here - there is nothing fundementally wrong with the company. This is a nice buying opportunity, and I just added 210 shares today at $10.89, now holding 1,260 shares at a bit over $11, and will continue to average down for as long as it stays under $10. I also like MAIN, FSC and TICC in the BDC space.

    Nice article, thank you.
    Mar 6, 2014. 02:23 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Bank Of America: A Good Time To Buy? [View article]
    I am also long on both BAC and BRK-B and plan to stay that way. If Buffett see's value in holding his BAC warrants until 2021, that's good enough for me to stay long the stock. Also agree on the probability of a dividend increase this quarter. I'd like to see some more share repurchases as well, would be nice to reduce the share count at these levels.
    Mar 5, 2014. 05:29 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Buffett's Berkshire Beatdown [View article]
    Not necessarily Uncle. Remember, price is what you pay, value is what you get. IMO, speculators live by stock price while investors look more towards book value, especially in BRK's case. I'm much more comfortable relying on their stated book value then I am with most other companies.
    Mar 5, 2014. 06:53 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment