Walter Schloss attended Ben Graham’s finance course before World War II and went to work for Graham-Newman in 1946. Leaving to establish Walter J.Schloss Associates in 1955, he was joined by son, Edwin, in 1973.
As one of Warren Buffett’s “Super-Investors of Graham and Doddsville” in his Hermes article of the same name, the Schlosses have run circles around theindexes. For the 33 years ended 12/31/88, Walter J. Schloss Associates earneda compound annual return of 21.6% per year on equity capital vs. 9.8% per year for the S&P 500 during the same period.
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Here are Walter & Edwin Schloss Associates’ annual return figures alongwith those of the S&P 500 for each of the 33 years ended 12/31/88. All performance figures were provided by Walter & Edwin Schloss Associates, LP.
A two-man firm with no employees whatsoever, the Schlosses occupy a small room within Tweedy, Browne’s offices. Alongside other memorabilia is a letter from Buffett to members of the “Buffett Group” before its Hilton Head conference in
Walter Schloss: In The Merchant Bankers, there’s a chapter I find particularly interesting. Mr. Warburg, who just recently passed away, lived in pre-Hitler Germany with his family. The Oppenheimers, the Mendelsohns and the Warburgs had been living there for many years. When Hitler came to power, Warburg became very concerned. He arranged to meet with one of the top people in Hitler’s government. Afterwards, he told his wife, “We’ve got to get out.” And they did. In 1934, they took their two children and they went to London giving up most of their wealth in the process. They were criticized by all of their friends. “Why are you leaving Germany?” He gave up a lot to get out. But he saw what was coming. Most of the other people who were wealthy and had been living there for years just ignored it. But Warburg was a non-conformist.
Edwin Schloss: Thankfully for him and his family, he was a contrarian.
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