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Over 101 Handpicked Warren Buffett Quotes On Investing

Warren Buffett better known as the “Oracle of Omaha”,  “Sage of Omaha” or “Wizard of Omaha” is obviously the most successful investor of all time. He is not only known for his investment philosophy but also for his great quotes on investing. As the CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, he has amassed a fortune by making wise investment decisions and sticking to a few key principles. Throughout his career, he has shared his insights and philosophies on investing through various speeches, interviews, and shareholder letters.

Warren Buffett
Warren Buffett

Here’s a handpicked list of over 101 quotes by Warren Buffett on investing that I find inspiring. Very inspiring. Also, I guess you might already know about his unique way of writing annual letters to shareholders. So I’m going to include some famous quotes from his annual letters as well. Whether you’re looking to improve your investment strategy or just seeking some words of wisdom from one of the greatest investors of all time, this collection of quotes is a must-read.

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144 Famous Investing Quotes by Warren Buffett

  1. “My wealth has come from a combination of living in America, some lucky genes, and compound interest.”
  2. “We will have another bubble, but usually you don’t get it the same way you got it before.”
  3. “I insist on a lot of time being spent, almost every day, to just sit and think. That is very uncommon in American business. I read and think. So I do more reading and thinking, and make less impulse decisions than most people in business.”
  4. “Never invest in a business you cannot understand.”
  5. “Buy a stock the way you would buy a house. Understand and like it such that you’d be content to own it in the absence of any market.”
  6. “Always invest for the long term.”
  7. “Successful Investing takes time, discipline and patience. No matter how great the talent or effort, some things just take time: You can’t produce a baby in one month by getting nine women pregnant.”
  8. “Cash combined with courage in a time of crisis is priceless.”
  9. “Whether we’re talking about socks or stocks, I like buying quality merchandise when it is marked down.”
  10. “What we learn from history is that people don’t learn from history.”
  11. “Nothing sedates rationality like large doses of effortless money.”
  12. “Buy a business, don’t rent stocks.”
  13. “Value Investing – is like buying Christmas Cards in January.”
  14. “A climate of fear is your friend when investing; a euphoric world is your enemy.”
  15. “You don’t need to be a rocket scientist. Investing is not a game where the guy with the 160 IQ beats the guy with 130 IQ.”
  16. “We don’t have to be smarter than the rest. We have to be more disciplined than the rest.”
  17. “We have long felt that the only value of stock forecasters is to make fortune-tellers look good.”
  18. “A prediction about the direction of the stock market tells you nothing about where stocks are headed, but a whole lot about the person doing the predicting.”
  19. “Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.”
  20. “I really like my life. I’ve arranged my life so that I can do what I want.”
  21. “We can afford to lose money. We can afford to lose a lot of money. But we cannot afford to lose one shred of our reputation. Make sure everything you do can be reported on the front page of your local newspaper written by an unfriendly, but intelligent reporter.”
  22. “We will only do with your money what we would do with our own.”
  23. “If you don’t feel comfortable owning something for 10 years, then don’t own it for 10 minutes.”
  24. “I am a better investor because I am a businessman and a better businessman because I am an investor.”
  25. “Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.”
  26. “Wishing makes dreams come true only in Disney movies; it’s poison in business.”
  27. “Opportunities come infrequently. When it rains gold, put out the bucket, not the thimble.”
  28. “All there is to investing is picking good stocks at good times and staying with them as long as they remain good companies.”
  29. “The Stock Market is designed to transfer money from the Active to the Patient.”
  30. “Stop trying to predict the direction of the stock market, the economy, interest rates, or elections.”
  31. “Predicting rain doesn’t count. Building arks does.”
  32. “I never attempt to make money on the stock market. I buy on the assumption that they could close the market the next day and not reopen it for ten years.”
  33. “By periodically investing in an index fund, the know-nothing investors can actually outperform most investment professionals.”
  34. “I have pledged… to always run Berkshire with more than ample cash… I will not trade even a night’s sleep for the chance of extra profits.”
  35. “The best business returns are usually achieved by companies that are doing something quite similar today to what they were doing five or ten years ago.”
  36. “Investing is laying out money now to get more money back in the future.”
  37. “I call investing the greatest business in the world … because you never have to swing. You stand at the plate, the pitcher throws you General Motors at 47! U.S. Steel at 39! and nobody calls a strike on you. There’s no penalty except opportunity lost. All day you wait for the pitch you like; then when the fielders are asleep, you step up and hit it.”
  38. “Never count on making a good sale. Have the purchase price be so attractive that even a mediocre sale gives good results.”
  39. “I don’t look to jump over 7-foot bars: I look around for 1-foot bars that I can step over.”
  40. “What the wise man does in the beginning, the fool does in the end.”
  41. “The chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken.”
  42. “For some reason, people take their cues from price action rather than from values. What doesn’t work is when you start doing things that you don’t understand or because they worked last week for somebody else. The dumbest reason in the world to buy a stock is because it’s going up.”
  43. “Never give up searching for the job that you’re passionate about. Try to find the job you’d have if you were independently rich. Forget about the pay. When you’re associating with the people that you love, doing what you love, it doesn’t get any better than that.”
  44. “We don’t get paid for activity, just for being right. As to how long we will wait, we’ll wait indefinitely.”
  45. “As Buffet said in the speech, “He’s not looking at quarterly earnings projections, he’s not looking at next year’s earnings, he’s not thinking about what day of the week it is, he doesn’t care what investment research from any place says, he’s not interested in price momentum, volume or anything. He’s simply asking: What is the business worth?”
  46. “Buy companies with strong histories of profitability and with a dominant business franchise.”
  47. “Most people get interested in stocks when everyone else is. The time to get interested is when no one else is. You can’t buy what is popular and do well.”
  48. “Our approach is very much profiting from lack of change rather than from change. With Wrigley chewing gum, it’s the lack of change that appeals to me. I don’t think it is going to be hurt by the Internet. That’s the kind of business I like.”
  49. “When asked how he became so successful in investing, Buffett answered: ‘we read hundreds and hundreds of annual reports every year.”
  50. “When a management team with a reputation for brilliance joins a business with poor fundamental economics, it is the reputation of the business that remains intact.”
  51. “I try to buy stock in businesses that are so wonderful that an idiot can run them. Because sooner or later, one will.”
  52. “Only those who will be sellers of equities in the near future should be happy at seeing stocks rise.  Prospective purchasers should much prefer sinking prices.”
  53. “Diversification is a protection against ignorance. It makes very little sense for those who know what they’re doing.”
  54. “Wide diversification is only required when investors do not understand what they are doing.”
  55. “The stock market is a no-called-strike game. You don’t have to swing at everything–you can wait for your pitch.”
  56. “You’re neither right nor wrong because other people agree with you. You’re right because your facts are right and your reasoning is right – that’s the only thing that makes you right. And if your facts and reasoning are right, you don’t have to worry about anybody else.”
  57. “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”
  58. “The first rule is not to lose. The second rule is not to forget the first rule.”
  59. “Only buy something that you’d be perfectly happy to hold if the market shut down for 10 years.”
  60. “I will tell you how to become rich. Close the doors. Be fearful when others are greedy. Be greedy when others are fearful.”
  61. “Why not invest your assets in the companies you really like? As Mae West said, ‘Too much of a good thing can be wonderful.”
  62. “Our favorite holding period is forever.”
  63. “So smile when you read a headline that says ‘Investors lose as market falls.’ Edit it in your mind to ‘Disinvestors lose as market falls—but investors gain.’ Though writers often forget this truism, there is a buyer for every seller and what hurts one necessarily helps the other.”
  64. “We make no attempt to pick the few winners that will emerge from an ocean of unproven enterprises. We’re not smart enough to do that, and we know it. Instead, we try to apply Aesop’s 2,600-year-old equation to opportunities in which we have reasonable confidence as to how many birds are in the bush and when they will emerge.”
  65. “What the wise do in the beginning, fools do in the end.”
  66. “You should leave your children enough so they can do anything, but not enough so they can do nothing.”
  67. “Investing is laying out money now to get more money back in the future.”
  68. “The most important thing to do if you find yourself in a hole is to stop digging.”
  69. “Money is not everything. Make sure you earn a lot before speaking such nonsense.”
  70. “When a management with a reputation for brilliance tackles a business with a reputation for bad economics, it is the reputation of the business that remains intact.”
  71. “Risk comes from not knowing what you’re doing.”
  72. “Lose money and I can forgive you, but lose even a shred of reputation and I will be ruthless.”
  73. “Volatility is not the same thing as risk, and anyone who thinks it is will cost themselves money.”
  74. “Unless you can watch your stock holding decline by 50% without becoming panic-stricken, you should not be in the stock market.”
  75. “The critical investment factor is determining the intrinsic value of a business and paying a fair or bargain price.”
  76. “Investors making purchases in an overheated market need to recognize that it may often take an extended period for the value of even an outstanding company to catch up with the price they paid.”
  77. “You can’t make a good deal with a bad person. Money will not change how healthy you are or how many people love you. It’s much easier to stay out of trouble now than to get out of trouble later. The trick is, when there is nothing to do, do nothing.”
  78. “It’s better to hang out with people better than you. Pick out associates whose behavior is better than yours and you’ll drift in that direction.”
  79. “Risk can be greatly reduced by concentrating on only a few holdings.”
  80. “Games are won by players who focus on the playing field – not by those whose eyes are glued to the scoreboard.”
  81. “It is not necessary to do extraordinary things to get extraordinary results.”
  82. “I bought my first stock in 1942, in the summer of ’42. I was 11 years old. And so 75 years have gone by. And I have never known what the market’s going to do the next day. And that’s not my game.”
  83. “An investor should ordinarily hold a small piece of an outstanding business with the same tenacity that an owner would exhibit if he owned all of that business.”
  84. “Diversification may preserve wealth, but concentration builds wealth.”
  85. “Great investment opportunities come around when excellent companies are surrounded by unusual circumstances that cause the stock to be misappraised.”
  86. “You won’t keep control of your time, unless you can say ‘no.’ You can’t let other people set your agenda in life.”
  87. “In the business world, the rearview mirror is always clearer than the windshield.”
  88. “If a business does well, the stock eventually follows.”
  89. “Cash never makes us happy, but it’s better to have the money burning a hole in Berkshire’s pocket than resting comfortably in someone else’s.”
  90. “Wall Street is the only place that people ride to in a Rolls-Royce to get advice from those who take the subway.”
  91. “A public-opinion poll is no substitute for thought.”
  92. “Four or five times during their lifetimes, investors will see incredible opportunities probably in equity markets… they have to have the mental fortitude to jump in when most are jumping out.”
  93. “Over the long term, the stock market news will be good. In the 20th century, the United States endured two world wars and other traumatic and expensive military conflicts; the Depression; a dozen or so recessions and financial panics; oil shocks; a fly epidemic; and the resignation of a disgraced president. Yet the Dow rose from 66 to 11,497.”
  94. “A pin lies in wait for every bubble. And when the two eventually meet, a new wave of investors learns some very old lessons.”
  95. “I never buy anything unless I can fill out on a piece of paper my reasons. I may be wrong, but I would know the answer to that …I’m paying $32 billion today for the Coca Cola Company because… If you can’t answer that question, you shouldn’t buy it. If you can answer that question, and you do it a few times, you’ll make a lot of money.“
  96. “The investor of today does not profit from yesterday’s growth.“
  97. “I knew a lot about what I did when I was 20. I had read a lot, and I aspired to learn everything I could about the subject.”
  98. “You only have to do a very few things right in your life so long as you don’t do too many things wrong.“
  99. “It’s far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price.“
  100. “You ought to be able to explain why you’re taking the job you’re taking, why you’re making the investment you’re making, or whatever it may be. And if it can’t stand applying pencil to paper, you’d better think it through some more. And if you can’t write an intelligent answer to those questions, don’t do it.“
  101. “Look at market fluctuations as your friend rather than your enemy; profit from folly rather than participate in it.“
  102. “An investor needs to do very few things right as long as he or she avoids big mistakes.“
  103. “Do a lot of reading.” – on how to determine the value of a business
  104. “Somebody once said that in looking for people to hire, you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if you don’t have the first, the other two will kill you. You think about it; it’s true. If you hire somebody without [integrity], you really want them to be dumb and lazy.”
  105. “Only when the tide goes out do you discover who’s been swimming naked.“
  106. “The fact that people will be full of greed, fear, or folly is predictable. The sequence is not predictable.“
  107. “Time is the friend of the wonderful company, the enemy of the mediocre.“
  108. “I do not like debt and do not like to invest in companies that have too much debt, particularly long-term debt. With long-term debt, increases in interest rates can drastically affect company profits and make future cash flows less predictable.“
  109. “We will reject interesting opportunities rather than over-leverage our balance sheet.“
  110. “I always knew I was going to be rich. I don’t think I ever doubted it for a minute.“
  111. “Turnarounds seldom turn.“
  112. “If at first you do succeed, quit trying on investing.“
  113. “I don’t measure my life by the money I’ve made. Other people might, but certainly don’t.“
  114. “Anything can happen in stock markets and you ought to conduct your affairs so that if the most extraordinary events happen, that you’re still around to play the next day.“
  115. “You shouldn’t own common stocks if a 50 per cent decrease in their value in a short period of time would cause you acute distress.“
  116. “With few exceptions when a manager with a reputation for brilliance tackles a business with a reputation for poor economics, it is the reputation of the business which remains intact.“
  117. “The business schools reward complex behavior more than simple behavior, but simple behavior is more effective.“
  118. “It’s not debt per say that overwhelms an individual corporation or country. Rather it is a continuous increase in debt in relation to income that causes trouble.“
  119. “A great investment opportunity occurs when a marvelous business encounters a one-time huge, but solvable problem.“
  120. “You do not adequately protect yourself by being half awake when other are sleeping.“
  121. “We like to buy businesses, but we don’t like to sell them.”
  122. “Turnarounds seldom turn around.”
  123. “What an investor needs is the ability to correctly evaluate selected businesses. Note that word ‘selected’: You don’t have to be an expert on every company, or even many. You only have to be able to evaluate companies within your circle of competence. The size of that circle is not very important; knowing its boundaries, however, is vital.”
  124. “I buy expensive suits. They just look cheap on me.”
  125. “Money to some extent sometimes let you be in more interesting environments. But it can’t change how many people love you or how healthy you are.“
  126. “It’s us fun being a gorse when the tractor comes along, or the blacksmith when the car comes along.“
  127. “Enjoy your work and work for whom you admire.”
  128. “Your premium brand had better be delivering something special, or it’s not going to get the business.”
  129. “With enough insider information and a million dollars, you can go broke in a year.“
  130. “Read Ben Graham and Phil Fisher read annual reports, but don’t do equations with Greek letters in them.“
  131. “In a commodity business, it’s very hard to be smarter than your dumbest competitor.“
  132. “A hyperactive stock market is the pickpocket of enterprise.”
  133. “What’s hot today isn’t likely to be hot tomorrow. The stock market reverts to fundamental returns over the long run. Don’t follow the herd.”
  134. “Valuing a business is part art and part science.”
  135. “I checked the actuarial tables, and the lowest death rate is among six-year-olds. So I decided to eat like a six-year-old. It’s the safest course I can take.”
  136. “The most important quality for an investor is temperament, not intellect. You need a temperament that neither derives great pleasure from being with the crowd or against the crowd.”
  137. “Chains of habits are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken.”
  138. “Every decade or so, dark clouds will fill the economic skies, and they will briefly rain gold.”
  139. “I’ve got an interesting business. It’s simple enough, I always tell people: if they’ve got more than 130 points of IQ, sell the rest because you’re not going to need it in this business. It may hurt you.”
  140. “My life couldn’t be happier. In fact, it’d be worse if I had six or eight houses. So, I have everything I need to have, and I don’t need any more.”
  141. “I can’t buy time, I can’t buy love but I can do anything else with money, pretty much. And why do I get up every day and jump out of bed and I’m excited at 88? It’s because I love what I do and love the people I do it with. I’ve got 25 people out here. We go to baseball games together. They try and make my life good, I try and make their life good.”
  142. “One advantage of our publicly-traded segment is that – episodically – it becomes easy to buy pieces of wonderful businesses at wonderful prices.”
  143. “In August 1994 Berkshire completed its purchase of the 400 million shares of Coca-Cola we now own. The total cost was $1.3 billion. The cash dividend we received from Coke in 1994 was $75 million. By 2022, the dividend had increased to $704 million.”
  144. “A great company keeps working after you are not; a mediocre company won’t do that.”
  145. “You have to keep learning if you want to become a great investor. When the world changes, you must change.”

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BONUS: Quotes by Warren Buffett on…

Quotes by Warren Buffett

Earning: “Never depend on single income. Make investment to create a second source.”

Success: “You do things when the opportunities come along. I’ve had periods in my life when I’ve had a bundle of ideas come along, and I’ve had long dry spells. If I get an idea next week, I’ll do something. If not, I won’t do a damn thing.”

Spending: “If you buy things you do not need, soon you will have to sell things you need.”

Saving: “Do not save what is left after spending, but spend what is left after saving.”

Risk: “Never test the depth of river with both the feet.”

Investment: “Do not put all your eggs in one basket.”

Expectation: “Honesty is very expensive gift. Do not expect it from cheap people.”

Humanity: “If you’re in the luckiest 1 percent of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99 percent.”

Productivity: “Step 1: Write down your top 25 goals. Step 2: Draw a circle around your top 5 goals. Step 3: Focus on your top 5 goals and say ‘No’ to the rest.”

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Warren Buffett’s investment philosophy has been an inspiration to millions of investors worldwide. His success in the field of investing is a testament to the power of discipline, patience, and a long-term approach.

Stay inspired and embrace this new year with all the enthusiasm you have. And do share your favorite quotes on your social media channels as it might just motivate your friends and family as well!

Have I missed your favorite quote by Warren Buffett?  If so, let me know!

Happy Investing! 🙂

First Published: July, 2009; Last Updated: Monday, February 27, 2023.