For anyone who does not follow my articles on Guru Focus I posted a really great (at least in my opinion) interview today with Roger Lowenstein. We spoke for about 35 minutes and although Roger did not have time to get through all my questions we discussed all the topics that I wanted to cover. Lowenstein wrote a best seller on Buffett, and is an expert on pensions, and the financial crisis. He was asked to testify before The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission-Roger Lowenstein, Author • MP3. We discussed Warren Buffett, Seth Klarman (Lowenstein is a close friend), pensions, and the financial crisis.
Below is Lowenstein’s bio and the interview.
Roger Lowenstein, a best-selling author, has published five books;Buffett: The Making of an American Capitalist, When Genius Failed, The End of Wall Street, While America Aged and Origins of the Crash, . Mr. Lowenstein is a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine and a columnist for Bloomberg. He frequently contributes articles and reviews to those and other publications. He is also a director of Sequoia Fund. His father, Louis Lowenstein, was an attorney, Columbia Law School professor and author and a noted critic of the financial industry.
Here is an excerpt followed by a link to the full interview:
Buffett named Greg Alexander as one of his top three investors . I know Greg Alexander keeps a low profile; do you know him from Sequoia Fund?
I know Greg. I think Warren is right. He’s a great investor, but as Sequoia director I am not going to comment on Greg personally.
Buffett also named Seth Klarman as one of his favorite investors. Klarman recommended reading all your books, and I think you interviewed him. Do you want to comment on Seth?
He’s a great investor. Seth walks the walk. It’s hard to think of someone does a better job of actually carrying out the discipline of looking for value wherever it is. Seth doesn’t wake up in the morning and say, “I need more exposure to foreign markets, domestic markets, stocks or bonds”; he looks for future streams of cash that are underpriced. He has the total courage of his convictions, and he goes with his judgments regardless of what others may think. He’s very bright. One way that he differs from Warren is that he built an entire organization which is first class. I don’t know how many people Klarman has at Baupost, more than 100 people I believe, but Buffett as an investor has always been a lone ranger.
Despite running a massive company, if it’s a quiet day, it’s just Warren when it comes to investing. On a busy day, it’s Warren, Lou Simpson before he retired, and now Todd Combs. But Seth has built an entire organization that is uniquely skilled, professional, disciplined, and ethical. it’s an entire, investing organization and I think that’s one way in which his model has differed from Warren’s.
While on the topic, do you by any chance know Buffett’s third favorite investor Li Lu?
No, I do not know him personally.
You wrote your bestseller in 1995 on Warren Buffett, Buffett: The Making of an American Capitalist; do you think that Buffett as a person, an investor, or an image has changed since you wrote the book?
To read the rest of the interview on Guru Focus click on the following link-http://www.gurufocus.com/news.php?id=125850