订阅

多平台阅读

微信订阅

杂志

申请纸刊赠阅

订阅每日电邮

移动应用

投资理财

巴菲特:后悔没投资谷歌和亚马逊

David Z. Morris 2018年05月16日

股神之所以错过了亚马逊和谷歌,或许与他本人科技知识较为有限有关。

知名投资人沃伦·巴菲特5月初在伯克希尔-哈撒韦公司的年度股东大会上承认,当年他拒绝投资亚马逊和谷歌(即现在的Alphabet公司),是个“错误的决定”。这个错误是因为他固守长久以来的投资原则所致。这或许意味着巴菲特被奉为经典的投资理论也需要与时俱进了。

据CNBC报道,巴菲特表示:“我一次见到杰夫·贝佐斯,就非常非常赞赏他的能力。我从一开始就关注着亚马逊。我认为他的成就几乎可以用奇迹来形容……问题是,如果我认为某个东西是奇迹的话,我一般就不会把宝押在它上面。”

巴菲特之所以错过了亚马逊和谷歌,或许与他本人科技知识较为有限有关。据巴菲特称,比尔·盖茨曾建议他放弃不太好用的远景搜索,转而投资搜索引擎界的新锐谷歌,只不过他没有听进去。巴菲特也承认,正是同样的“愚蠢”让他错过了早期投资微软的机会。“诸葛一生唯谨慎”这句评语充分诠释了巴菲特和他的伯克希尔-哈撒韦公司的投资哲学。巴菲特总是警告投资者,只在他们能理解的生意上下赌注。他也坦然表示,在谷歌和亚马逊身上,“如果我当时对某些业务有些洞察力,当时的机会就会明显得多。”

巴菲特反复错失良机的另一个原因,则是他个人的投资方法。他在会上还表示:“我错就错在,当我认为远期前景远好于当前股票价格时,没有能够做出决断。”这也反映了巴菲特一直奉行的“价值投资”理念的瑕疵——所谓“价值投资”,即要购买当前股价低于公司实际价值的股票。

然而最近这十几年,科技公司的股票相比于其资产和收益一直处于被高估的状态,因为人们赌的是这些公司的技术终将主导市场的预期。巴菲特一向喜欢投资那些处于市场垄断地位的公司,之前他在这方面也有不少成功例子,但在这方面,数据密集型的科技公司与其他行业是有区别的。科技的网络效应会形成一种“反馈效应”,帮助科技公司在某方面形成类垄断地位,而要形成这种类垄断地位,则需要巨额的长期投资。像亚马逊这种公司的早期投资者,都是在挺过了多年的巨额亏损之后才等来了盈利。当然,只要盈利一来,那就如长江流水,滔滔不绝了。

当然,这种类垄断地位对投资人虽然是好事,对于社会却未必是好事。在数字时代,监管机构对于垄断的新内涵和外延尚未明确界定,但已有越来越多的批评人士开始呼吁对一些大科技公司的规模和权力进行限制,其中首当其冲的就是巴菲特后悔没有投资的那几家公司。(财富中文网)

译者:朴成奎 

Revered investor Warren Buffett admitted at Berkshire Hathaway’s annual shareholder meeting Saturday that “I made the wrong decisions” when he passed up investments in Amazon and Google (now Alphabet). It’s a mistake he made because he stuck to his longtime investing principles—and that might mean it’s time to update those ideas.

“I had [a] very very very high opinion of [Jeff Bezos’s] ability when I first met him, and I underestimated him,” Buffett said in comments reported by CNBC. “I’ve watched Amazon from the start. I think what Jeff Bezos has done is something close to a miracle . . . the problem is when I think something will be a miracle, I tend not to bet on it.”

Buffett’s own limited technical savvy might have contributed to the missed opportunity. Bill Gates, according to Buffett, had to personally tell him to switch from the creaky Altavista search engine to Google—and Buffett also admitted that “stupidity” kept him from investing in Microsoft early on. In that light, turning away from Google and Amazon reflects the investing philosophy that has been core to Berkshire Hathaway’s epochal success. Buffett has long cautioned investors to only bet on businesses they understand, and he admitted that when it came to Google and Amazon, “it would have been far better obviously if I had some insights into certain businesses.”

But another aspect of tech investment is more fundamentally at odds with Buffett’s approach. Buffett also said Saturday that “I made the mistake in not being able to come to a conclusion where I really felt that at the present prices that the prospects were far better than the prices indicated.” That’s a summation of Buffett’s emphasis on value investing—buying stocks that underprice the intrinsic value of companies.

But tech companies for at least a decade have been persistently overvalued by the stock market compared to their assets and revenue, on the basis of their potential to totally dominate markets in the future. Buffett has been quite public about the appeal of companies with monopoly-like market positions, but those positions are built differently in the data-driven tech world than in many of the sectors where Buffett has succeeded. Network effects and, more recently, data-backed “feedback effects” act as a new kind of monopolistic moat for tech companies, and building those moats takes huge, long-term spending. Early investors in Amazon had to weather years of deep losses before profits came—but when they arrived, it was in torrents.

Of course, just because pseudo-monopolies are good investments doesn’t mean they’re good for society. Regulators are still catching up with what a monopoly means in the digital age, but a growing number of critics are calling for limits on the size and power of the very giants Buffett wishes he had bet on.

我来点评

  最新文章

最新文章:

500强情报中心

财富专栏