I have gotten back to consuming more content in 2018. This includes books because I was lucky to hit a string of good books. These include More Money Than God: Hedge Funds and the Making of a New Elite", "More than you know: finding financial wisdom in unconventional places", "Memories of a Nation"
The latest book I finished is "The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life " Alice Schroeder. Summary: extremely good book if you are interested in how investing looks like in practice and have an interest in business history. Highly readable (the author is both a subject expert and a journalist) for those interested. Style-wise between a Michael Lewis book and Memories of a Nation or Postwar by Tony Judt. I would have estimated it at 400 Pages but as I just checked it is 832 pages (I read on kindle).
1) Extreme Focus required for extreme success in on domain
The books shows effectively how extrem the focus, or in other words, sacrifice of things that are not in the focus is: relationships of Buffet to his wife and children. Very few experiences in travel outside of the US, no desire for other foods. Scences with Buffet not touching Sushi or things other than the plain items he normally eats are very entertaining.
Interesting to note that both Michael Munger and Benjamin Graham where apparently known for just leaving conversations that are not interesting. I want to do that from time to time and should probably do that more.
3) What is a good company
From a business perspective (defined as making more money out of money) the definition of a good company was extremely interesting to me.
The ideal business is one that earns very high returns on capital and that keeps using lots of capital at those high returns. That becomes a compounding machine. So if you had your choice, if you could put a $100 million into a business that earns 20% ($20 million) on that capital, ideally it would be able to earn 20% on $120 million the following year and so on. You could keep redeploying capital at [those] same returns over time.
Thats because the combination of generating capital and then using that capital in itself to generate more is a case for a capital allocation type job that makes sense. It is obviously also exactly what Berkshire Hathaway is.
4) Business history
A number of interesting things, including that Warren Buffet was the CEO of Solomon Brother and later invested in Goldman Sachs as well even.
I recommend to read this book.