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September 2, 2014 / 7 Elul, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Warren Buffett’

Fischer Cuts Interest Rate and Says Bank to Buy 2 Billion Dollars

Monday, May 13th, 2013

Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer announced on Monday a surprise cut the prime interest rate as part of his battle to fight the appreciation of the shekel and help the economy to keep growing. The financial markets responded with the shekel-dollar rate rising more than 1.5 percent to the level of 3.61 shekels to the dollar.

Fischer announced the interest rate cut two weeks ahead of the usual end-of-the-month decision on whether to change the rate.

The dollar was worth only 3.55 shekels last week, dropping over the past several weeks from the relatively lofty level of 3.8 shekels to the dollar.

A lower shekel-dollar rate hurts exports because foreign buyers have to pay relatively more dollars than they would when the shekel is worth less. In addition, exporters make less money after converting foreign dollars into shekels.

Factors in the lower rate are the anticipation of tax revenue from Israel’s natural gas bonanza, which came on-stream several weeks ago, Warren Buffet’s $2 billion purchase of the remaining shares of the Israel-based Isracar tool-making company, the possibility of a $1 billion buyout of Waze by Facebook, and the relatively stable Israeli economy.

Fischer cut the rate by a quarter of a percent, with the new 1.5 percent rate making the shekel less attractive to foreign investors.

After the Bank of Israel’s two small purchases of dollars the past three weeks in an effort to keep speculators from forcing the shekel-dollar rate any lower, Fischer announced on Monday a massive dollar-buying plan on the scale of his purchases several years ago when the shekel-dollar rate sank to 3.30.

The Bank of Israel said the decisions to lower the rate and buy dollars was made “in light of the continued appreciation of the shekel, taking into account the start of natural gas production from the Tamar gas field, interest rate reductions by many central banks – notably the European Central Bank, the quantitative easing in major economies worldwide and the downward revision in global growth forecasts.”

The Bank of Israel added that global growth forecasts, especially for Europe and China have been revised downward, which effect Israel’s economy.

It explained that the program to buy dollars takes into account “the effects on the financial account resulting from the natural gas production” that will result in foreign exchange payments by the gas companies.

“As in the past, the Bank of Israel will continue to operate in the foreign exchange market in cases of exchange rate fluctuations which are not in line with fundamental economic conditions, or when conditions in the foreign exchange market are disorderly,” the Bank of Israel added.

Warren Buffet Buys Out Israeli Firm for $2 Billion

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway is paying $2.05 billion for the remaining 20 percent of IMC International Metalworking Co, otherwise known as Isracar, completing the buyout that began with the giant $4 billion purchase of 80 percent of the company in 2006.

“We are delighted to acquire the portion of the company that was retained by the Wertheimer family when IMC first became a member of the Berkshire group of companies,” Buffett said Wednesday in a statement.

“As you can surmise from the price we’re paying for the remaining interest, IMC has enjoyed very significant growth over the last seven years,” Buffett, 82, said.

Isracar employs more than 2,000 people in Israel and 7,500 others around the world.

Buffett has literally fallen in love with Israel. The 2006 purchase of most of Isracar was Buffett’s largest-ever investment outside of the United States.

When he visited Israel prior to the spectacular purchase of the precision carbide cutting tools company, he said, “If you’re going to the Middle East to look for oil, you can skip Israel. If you’re looking for brains, look no further. Israel has shown that it has a disproportionate amount of brains and energy.”

Since then, an American-Israeli consortium drilling off the Haifa coast has made the world’s largest discovery of natural gas in the past 20 years, with a strong possibility of commercial quantities of oil.

Buffet’s purchase of the rest of Isracar on Wednesday helped strengthen the shekel against the dollar, with the going rate for a greenback now less than 3.58 shekels.

The Economist Who Helped Warren Buffet Get Rich

Monday, February 18th, 2013

Meet Joe Carlen, who has written an intriguing biography of Benjamin Graham, the economist who influenced Warren Buffet, Irving Kahn, and other famous financial figures. Carlen, author of The Einstein of Money, and a business consultant himself, speaks to Doug on this week’s episode of the Goldstein on Geltshow about Benjamin Graham and his philosophy. How do Graham’’s theories affect investors and the financial world today? Find out by listening to this fascinating interview.

Don’t Wait Until You’re 100 to Give Away Your Assets

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

Recently, an eighty-year-old client shared some important news with me. He had just received an inheritance from his mother, who had passed away at the ripe old age of 100. His mother had been fabulously rich, but towards the end of her life she had slowed down, and therefore had little use for her money.

“As for me,” her son sighed, “I’m no spring chicken myself, and I don’t see myself needing so much of it either. But I sure could have used it when I was younger ….”

My client’s story is not that unusual. Many times, people may work hard to build up savings, but their loved ones only reap the benefits after the older generation has left this world. This doesn’t only apply to family members, either. How many times do you see on the sides of a large building a sign saying, “Built in the memory of …,” or read about the “John and Jane Doe Memorial Fund?” Do you ever wonder if the aforementioned John and Jane Doe look down from the Other World to see what is being done with their legacy? Or, how about a trust that isn’t being distributed exactly according to its founders’ wishes? Maybe they could have been involved in some of the projects, making even better use of their assets. Perhaps they would also have gotten greater joy out of it if they had lived to see these achievements for themselves.

At the same time, the amount of money that you can give away is always relative. Obviously, the more that you have, the more you can give, but you need to make sure that your own financial situation is secure so you don’t suffer as the result of over-generosity to your family or to various charitable causes.

How do you know how much to give?

First, consult with your financial adviser and determine your net worth. Together, consider how much money you need to be able to live a fairly comfortable life. Make sure to account for the unpredictable nature of life and the markets, and then consider gifting some of the excess.

Philanthropist Lewis Cullman said, “It’s better to give money away when you’re alive than to give it away in your will because what do you care what people say? When you’re dead, you won’t be around to hear it.” When I interviewed Mr. Cullman on the Goldstein on Gelt show, he told me that he once asked Warren Buffett why he didn’t give away even more money to charity (This followed an initiative when Warren Buffett and Bill Gates signed the Gates-Buffett Pledge promising to donate at least half of their wealth over time to charity, and invited other wealthy figures to join them). When I asked Mr. Cullman why fifty percent of Warren Buffett’s wealth wouldn’t be a good deal, he replied, “It’s a very good deal. But if you have $30 billion and you give half of it away, you’ve still got $15 billion and that’s a lot of money!”

If you want to watch your grandchildren or your favorite causes benefiting from your assets, consider meeting with your financial advisor and creating a financial plan to determine exactly how much you can gift. Get a free ebook to gain more inspiration to gift your funds by reading the thought-provoking interview with Lewis Cullman.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/goldstein-on-gelt/dont-wait-until-youre-100-to-give-away-your-assets/2012/07/11/

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