Third wealthiest man in the world, Warren Buffett, known for his tremendous investment success as well as his high-end philanthropy, told a group of investors at the Berkshire annual meeting that he had no interest in investing in Apple (or Google), seeing them as risky investments.
The New York Times quotes Mr. Buffett as saying that while both tech giants are “huge companies that make a ton of money,” he does not choose to invest with them. Showing a plain-spoken honesty that probably has more to do with his success than most realize, he also said that “the chance of being way wrong about I.B.M. are probably less than being way wrong in Apple or Google,” showing that he does keep up on current trends.
Bottom line, though is that Mr. Buffett admits, “I just don’t know how to value them.”
Buffett has always invested in “sure-thing” companies, so this comment (in response to a direct question during the conference call from The Times’s Andrew Sorkin) is no surprise. He has even commented on AAPL stock before. Where Apple is now is not an indicator of where they will be in ten years time, for example, which makes this a short-term investment for someone like Buffett.
While it probably won’t keep investors from investing in Apple, Buffett’s comments will be heard across the investment community, no doubt. When a giant like Buffet speaks, people tend to listen. Only time will tell whether they have any effect on the current or near-future stock valuation of our favorite technology company, but it’s an interesting reminder that while Apple’s doing well now, they’ve got a long while to go before they are considered a riskless sure thing.