Warren Buffett: ‘Uncle Sam delivered during financial crisis’

19 November 2010

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett has thanked the US government for ‘delivering’ during the global credit crisis.

In an open letter to the authorities, published in the New York Times, the chief executive officer at Berkshire Hathaway, said that despite some initial confusion, its actions should be seen as “remarkably effective”.

Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve, Tim Geithner, Treasury Secretary, and former post holder Hank Paulson were all singled out for praise as part of the correspondence.

Mr Hathaway wrote: “You have been criticized, Uncle Sam, for some of the earlier decisions that got us in this mess - most prominently, for not battling the rot building up in the housing market.

“But then few of your critics saw matters clearly either. In truth, almost all of the country became possessed by the idea that home prices could never fall significantly.”

He concluded: “Often you are wasteful, and sometimes you are bullying. On occasion, you are downright maddening. But in this extraordinary emergency, you came through - and the world would look far different now if you had not.”

The investor signed the letter: ‘your grateful nephew, Warren’.

By Jim Ottewill

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