Buffett Stings Hedge Funds Anew Over Their `Misbegotten' Rewards (BBG)
In his well-read annual letter to Berkshire Hathaway Inc. shareholders on Saturday, he estimated that investors wasted more than $100 billion on high-fee Wall Street money managers over the past 10 years. “The bottom line: When trillions of dollars are managed by Wall Streeters charging high fees, it will usually be the managers who reap outsized profits, not the clients,” Buffett wrote. “Both large and small investors should stick with low-cost index funds.”
Warren Buffett endorses share buybacks (FT)
In his latest annual letter, the chief executive of Berkshire Hathaway urged everyone in what he called the “heated” debate over buybacks to “take a deep breath”. He wrote: “Some people have come close to calling them un-American — characterising them as corporate misdeeds that divert funds needed for productive endeavours. That simply isn’t the case.”
Upstart analysts show banks the way in new era for research (Reuters)
Rather than desk-based financial modeling, Hiley sends his analysts out to visit stores and test products. The Analyst was among the first to flag issues at Gowex, a Spanish tech firm it later emerged was faking revenues. "The sell-side and fund managers hadn't done any on-the ground work," Hiley said. "They don't have the time."
Chart of the Day: The BlackBerry’s fall to 0.0 percent market share (Recode)
A decade after the iPhone launched, the BlackBerry platform is all but dead.
Bank Lending Signals Caution (WSJ)
The more worrisome explanation is that political uncertainty is causing companies and banks to put off big decisions until the outlook for trade and tax policy is clearer. The lending slowdown began showing up clearly just before the election last year.
Bond Market Is Flashing Warning Signal on Trump Reflation Trade (WSJ)
Some money managers and traders believe that a rising Treasury bond market, often seen as a haven for investors, is a warning that valuations of riskier assets may be stretched. James Sarni, senior managing partner at Payden & Rygel, is among those who bought Treasurys in recent weeks. “The bond market is showing a more realistic view on the fiscal policy outlook than the stock market,’’ Mr. Sarni said. “The bond market has it right.”
When driverless cars crash, who gets the blame and pays the damages? (WaPo)
If anything about driverless cars can be considered an old riddle it is this one: the car is driving itself down a residential street when a woman pushing a baby stroller suddenly enters a crosswalk. Unable to stop, should the car’s computer opt to hit mother and child, or veer off to strike a tree, almost certainly killing its passengers?
What’s the price of meaningfulness? (Alphaville)
The tech utopians are forcing creativity on everyone. Not everyone is. Humanity is a spectrum of different types of personalities and natural skills. Some people crave order and security. Others love risk, mess and insecurity. To assume humanity is all the latter is ridiculous because actually the demographic evidence suggests most of humanity is pretty mediocre and satisfied with quite ordinary or material things. Ignorance is bliss etc etc.
Kung Fu Master With Iron Crotch Is One Ballsy Martial Artist (HuffPo)
Master Wei has been practicing his ball-bashing form of martial arts for 10 years in the city of Luoyang. “I insist on doing it every day,” he says in the video. “I believe it builds up resistance and I have [gotten] less fever and colds than before.” [...] Here’s one of his students practicing having his privates smashed with a battering ram. Repeatedly.