It might just be the articles I've happened to see since the weekend, but it seems that most financial journalists are bemoaning (or gloating over?) Berkshire Hathaway's (BRKA) recent "lackluster" performance.
My take: let's get real.
Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger haven't succumbed to old age. They haven't lost their fast balls in choosing stocks to buy. And they haven't lost their heat in selecting strategic acquisitions, either.
The fact is that they are working with HUGE sums in allocating Berkshire Hathaway's capital. The problem of putting $45 billion to work is one we'd all love to have. Yet it's challenging nonetheless.
I bet Buffett and Munger could name plenty of companies worthy of investment or outright purchase. But those companies aren't big enough to impact Berkshire's bottom line. I like to think (though I don't really know and have no way of proving) that one of my holdings, Molson Coors (NYSE:TAP) is a stock that Warren Buffett would have gladly held back in the days of the Buffett Partnership. Being forced to work with larger sums of money, he bought shares in Anheuser-Busch (NYSE:BUD) instead.
Anyway, I haven't read so much Buffett's-lost-it style reporting since the height of the tech bubble. And you know who got the last laugh there.