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Berkshire’s Munger Retires From ‘Cult’

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Alternating between praise and barbs for audience members, Charles Munger, the 87-year-old vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, conducted his final investor conference on Friday.

charlie munger“You all need a new cult hero,” Munger (left) said, according to Bloomberg. “I’m doing you a favor” by ending the annual question-and-answer sessions with investors, he said.

The conference, called “A Morning with Charlie,” in Pasadena, Calif., was “three hours of observations on the deficiencies of bankers, the rise of China and the record of George W. Bush,” Bloomberg states.  

He also criticized Bank of America, praised Costco Wholesale and said “he hopes he’s dead before Berkshire pays a dividend.”

“I think that some of you will live to see a Berkshire dividend, but I hope I don’t,” Munger said.

Bloomberg notes Berkshire has said it will “consider a payout when managers are no longer able to find investments for its profits.”

“You people aren’t normal,” Munger told the audience, whom he referred to as groupies. “It’s only peculiar people like you that I want to impress.”

“Investment bankers and mortgage issuers were afflicted with insanity, megalomania and evil when they helped inflate the pre-2008 housing bubble,” Bloomberg reports Munger said. He added that U.S. unemployment must be faced with “gumption” because people in China, Japan and other Asian countries have demonstrated talent at production and innovation.

“This brutality of capitalistic competition is really something,” Munger said. “I kind of like seeing the Chinese rise after so many years being down.”