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Warren Buffett Tells CNN: I’m Not Worried About America’s Future

In an interview with CNN’s Poppy Harlow, billionaire investor Warren Buffett explains how he thinks the market economy is doing, why he thinks the wealthy should donate more, and if the Trump administration’s tax plan is effective.

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Market Economy

Warren Buffett On Market Economy: I'm Not Worried About America's Future

Transcript

Happy Birthday Warren. Thank you. It's also my anniversary too.

Well there you go. Thank you for spending some of it with us. Good to be here. So the reason we're here today. Wine bottles in Rome is because someone paid three point three million dollars to have lunch with you. It's great for a very important cause and that's the Glide Foundation which sole purpose is to break the cycle of poverty and marginalisation for people in this country.

It shows that somebody cared for somebody than anybody cared. Why is this cause so important to you.

Well it's for real. For one thing. I mean I was skeptical at first but but my first wife kept saying this is something special. So I actually went to church on a Sunday. But then I met Cecil Williams and I met the other people that he was helping and I saw these people would.

Be giving up on them up on themselves or their friends and giving up on them. They thought the world was giving up on him. But Cecil never gave up. And. So now they've. They've changed the lives of thousands and thousands of people one at a time. And I've never been able to do that. But I I love supporting somebody that. Spent over 50 years now doing that and they'll continue to do it.

There are only so many millionaires and billionaires who can give back in the way you do. Not all of them do. And I thought it was interesting because in an email that you sent to the billionaire investor Leon Copperman you wrote that a disproportionately low number of people who made their fortune on Wall Street have donated to the Giving Pledge. Obviously the foundation that you have set up with Yellam Melinda Gates to give the majority of wealth to those in need. You're basically saying Wall Street billionaires aren't giving enough away.

Well I'm saying that there's a disproportionate number of people elsewhere. Leon those are terrific. I mean is going to get away 90 percent plus. And there's a there's others but there's two groups. Well I can say just two necessary. But there's another group the inheritors generally are less inclined to to because they feel they're breaking a covenant that their grandfather gave it to their father and their father gave it to them so they don't feel like they should keep it. Well I don't think they should be right but it's something that's all tied up in the family business too. But. Know I think that. If you're lucky in this world. And. A lot of it was what was determined about us was the moment we were born where we were born that we were born to it you was your zip code really is important in terms of your future. The ovarian lottery have so any in as you say Ovarian Lottery and.

I've been lucky you've been lucky. Most of our friends have been lucky very have a lot of people are lucky.

What is Warren the number one thing that the Trump administration can do right now to help the most marginalised in society. I think we could reform. And expand.

The Earned Income Tax Credit. I think. People people don't need the minimum wage they need. They need they need a. Maximum amount of cash in their pocket.

And the Earned Income Tax Credit rewards those who work but they also help the person whose skills don't fit the mark of the top of your skills. So the market economy my skill set of market economy not everybody should do it. If this was a sports economy I'd start to that you could give me six hours of retraining every day. Mean I was really good and so people were more of a market economy but a rich family does not leave people behind.

Has the president called you because I know you've said you you don't pick up the phone and call the president you've never called the president has President Trump call you and ask for your advice on that on the economy. But. But.

If you ever do I give him my best advice. But.

The answer is no and they should. I mean Birju peasants Cosby certainly don't you know probably the most times I've been called by a president might be. Four times or something like that.

The stock market is at record highs unemployment is below 4 per cent economic growth in the second quarter was for.