Berkshire Hathaway Chairman and CEO Warren Buffett expressed confidence in the resilience of traditional investing principles despite technological advancements during the company's annual shareholder meeting on Saturday.
The legendary investor emphasized that the basic rules of investing have remained consistent throughout the years, despite significant societal changes since he first bought the stock at age 11 in 1942.
"What gives you opportunities is other people doing dumb things," Buffett said. "In the 58 years we've been running Berkshire, I'd say there has been a great increase in the number of people doing dumb things."
Berkshire Vice Chairman Charlie Munger acknowledged the potential for artificial intelligence to disrupt industries but expressed skepticism about the hype surrounding the technology.
"I think old-fashioned intelligence works pretty well," Munger said.
Buffett, 92, and Munger, 99, maintain their sharpness and wisdom, according to Chris Bloomstran, president of Semper Augustus Investments Group, who spoke at a value investing conference held by Gabelli Funds on Friday. The two leaders, along with Berkshire lieutenants Ajit Jain and Greg Abel, answered around 60 questions from the public during the event.
Buffett also addressed challenges facing the United States, including increasing tribalism in government, but said he would still choose to be born in the country today, believing in its long-term prospects.
"The world is overwhelmingly short-term focused," Buffett said. "I'd love to be born today and go out with not too much money and hopefully turn it into a lot of money."
Berkshire's first-quarter results revealed a net income of $35.5 billion, up from $5.58 billion a year earlier, and operating earnings of $8.07 billion, up from $7.04 billion last year. Buffett has consistently advised shareholders to focus on operating earnings as a more accurate reflection of the company's performance. At the end of the quarter, Berkshire held $130.6 billion in cash and cash equivalents, up from around $128.6 billion at the end of 2022.
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