Warren Buffett's Message To Gloom, Doom, and Fear | Exploring Markets

Warren Buffett's Message To Gloom, Doom, and Fear

There has never been an easier time to be worried, fearful, or pessimistic about the America.

There is controversy everywhere you look and as everyone connects to the Internet, our ability to avoid drama becomes nearly impossible. With that being said, we direct you to an interview Warren Buffett once had with news reporter Becky Quick.

Buffett is asked what he thinks about the future of America. Is the American system under threat? Buffett responds in a remarkable way. He's heard this story his entire life. When he was 11 years old, World War 2 was eurpting across the Earth and people were saying it then. Read this and share it:

Becky Quick: There are times, Warren, where you hear pundits or other people saying, "Look things are at risk at this point. Our American way of life, our system is under threat." And I've heard this from all sides at all different times. Is there ever a point where you thought that was the case?

Warren Buffett: No, and you say you've heard it at all times from all sides. I've been hearing it, you know, all my life. And in the spring of 1942 I was 11 years old, and the Dow was at about 100. And we were losing the war in the Pacific at that point, that was early. It was shortly after Pearl Harbor. And there was no doubt in this country we were going to win over time. I mean, and people said, "Well, this is let's wait till things are clear, let's wait till we start winning the war." There's always a reason to wait and I've heard that all my life.

You know, when I got out of school the Dow had never been above 200. There'd never been a year when the Dow had not been below 200 during the year. Even in 1929, when it got to 381, the low was below 200. Never been a year. Well, so what, you know? But that was a big subject at that time. And then you know, we ran into price controls, we ran into the oil shocks, you name it, just all kinds of things. And those are diversions. So all my life I've been hearing, "You know, maybe there's a better time to invest, you know?" Or, "Things are more unpredictable now." They're always unpredictable. I can't predict what's gonna happen tomorrow. I mean, you could have anything happen tomorrow.

We've had October 19th, 1987, 22 percent down in one day. So I can predict what'll happen ten or 20 years in a general way, but I have no idea what'll happen tomorrow. And the important thing is if you got these wonderful assets out there, to own 'em, and which ones do you own? I mean, if you save money you can buy bonds, you can buy a farm, you can buy an apartment, house, or even buy a part of American business. And if you buy a 10-year bond now you're paying over 40 times earnings for something whose earnings can't grow. And you know, you compare that to buying equities, good businesses, I don't think there's any comparison. But that doesn't mean the stock market can't go down 20 percent tomorrow. I mean, you never know what it's going to do tomorrow, but you do know what it's going to do over ten or 20 years.

People talk about Dow 20,000 being high. Well, I remember when it hit 200 and that was supposedly high. The Dow, I mean, the Dow, in your lifetime. You know, you're going to see a Dow that certainly approaches 100,000 and that doesn't require any miracles, that just requires the American system continuing to function pretty much as it has.