Live-Blogging The Ira Sohn Conference: David Einhorn Thinks Steve Ballmer Is The Fucking Rake, Carl Icahn Is Recommending Carl Icahn


5:42 Speaker 14, David Einhorn, Greenlight Capital

5:43 Presentation: "Two Longs And Two Types Of Overhang"

5:43 David wants to start with a quote by Jean Claude Juncter: "When it becomes serious you have to lie"

5:44 Einhorn's first long idea is...

Delta Lloyd

5:45 Strong balance sheet, good risk management, well-positioned, etc

5:47 Overhang: (parent-company) Aviva

5:48 (There will be a third idea posted on the Value Investing site later because Greenlight "has so many good ones we had a hard time choosing)

5:49 Second long idea: Microsoft

5:50 Einhorn said five years ago that Microsoft "was the stock market's A-Rod equivalent"

5:52 Microsoft "doesn't get enough credit for all of its achievements"

5:53 Microsoft can't win as a team with A-Rod on his own; Microsoft suffers from "Charlie Brown management"

5:55 Steve Ballmer is "stuck in the past"

5:57 Einhorn would like to remind you of a statement by Ballmer to a reporter a couple years back wherein The Balm said "There is no chance for for the iPod to get any signifcant market share."

5:58 Microsoft needs a leadership situation like the one Einhorn encountered on the field during intramural football his freshman year at Cornell. An upper-classman told him, "You're tall, you should play quarterback." After less than 30 minutes it was clear that Einhorn "should not be quarterback." The upperclassman told him, "Okay, we've seen what you could do, let's give someone else a chance." Steve Ballmer should let the board say to him, "We've seen what you can do, let's give so and so a chance."

6:02: Steve Ballmer's presence "is the biggest overhang on Microsoft's stock." Balmer, your move! Thank you and good night!

6:04: Einhorn would like to add, "Go Mets"

And some slides, in case the point was unclear:

6:20 Speaker 15, Carl Icahn

6:30 Carl Icahn long idea? IEP (Icahn Enterprises)


Warren Buffett And David Einhorn Are In Agreement Re: The Frigidity Of Their Disfavored Investment Ideas

Back in February, in his annual letter to investors, Berkshire Hathaway chief Warren Buffett spent a good bit of time discussing why one shouldn't own gold. Beyond the fact that, according to WB, gold doesn't "change in size and [is] incapable of producing anything," and you'd be much better off buying farmland (which "a century from now will have produced staggering amounts of corn, wheat, cotton and other crops and will continue to produce that valuable bounty") or shares of Exxon Mobil (which "will probably have delivered trillions of dollars in dividends to its owners," the Oracle of Omaha had one incontrovertible, be all end all reason for eschewing the metal: its unfuckability. Oh sure, you can do things to a cube, you can fondle it, you can talk dirty to it, you can send nude pictures of yourself, you can even drill a hole in it and fuck it senseless, but, the thing is, the cube will not respond. No reciprocation, no gratitude, not even a sign it enjoyed itself.  For Buffett, no further argument was necessary as to the worthlessness of the commodity. (Silver, on the other hand, will make you feel like you're 18 again.) Anyway, David Einhorn sort of feels the same way about the dollar. Greenlight Capital 1Q2012 Letter To Investors [PDF] Related: Don't Think He Hasn't Tried