Warren Buffett Gives Each Family Member $10,000 & Their Favorite Candy For Christmas
Warren Buffett, the renowned investor and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, has earned a reputation for his thrifty lifestyle and practical approach to finances. Yet, during the holiday season, Buffett reveals a different side of himself, one marked by generosity and a unique approach to gift-giving. From practical items such as dresses and chocolates to envelopes filled with cash, Buffett’s gifts are a reflection of his values of practicality, gratitude and a hint of humor.
A hallmark of Buffett’s holiday gift-giving is his tradition of gifting cash and stocks. In 2019, Mary Buffett, who was previously married to Warren’s son Peter, disclosed to ThinkAdvisor that Warren used to give each family member $10,000 in hundred-dollar bills. Recognizing the family’s propensity to quickly spend the money, Warren altered his approach.
On one memorable Christmas, he gave $10,000 worth of shares in a company he had recently invested in, presenting the recipients with the option to either cash in the shares or retain them as an investment. This gesture was a testament to Warren’s astute investment acumen and his wish to instill a sense of financial prudence in his family.
Opting to gift shares over cash was a strategic decision that not only provided the recipient with a valuable asset but also served as a subtle lesson in the importance of making sound financial choices. By giving shares from a company in which he had recently invested, Buffett demonstrated his confidence in his investment decisions. This approach to gift-giving underscored his desire to pass down his investment knowledge and principles to his family, encouraging them to adopt a long-term perspective and consider the potential growth of their assets, as opposed to the immediate satisfaction derived from spending cash.
Just as receiving shares in a company provides the opportunity to be part of its future success, investing in a startup at the ground level can offer the potential for significant returns if the company takes off. This parallel highlights the importance of considering long-term potential and being strategic with financial decisions.
In addition to giving stocks, Buffett has maintained another Christmas tradition: giving dresses to the women in his life. In the 1960s, he would frequent Topps, a dress shop in Omaha, Nebraska, and provide the store clerk with a list of dress sizes for all the women in his family, showcasing his practical method of holiday shopping.
Buffett also sends boxes of See’s Candies, one of Berkshire Hathaway’s best investments, to dozens of relatives and friends each year. These boxes come with his annual Christmas card, which often features Buffett in humorous or playful scenarios. For example, his 2013 card featured Buffett dressed as Walter White from “Breaking Bad” with the message “Have yourself a Meth-y Little Christmas.”
In 2018, the card was a photo of Buffett wearing a t-shirt with the words, “The Next Charlie Munger” and the message “Aiming High In 2019” on the card. Another year, Munger and Buffett were dressed in black suits and cowboy hats with the caption “Butch & Sundance” and the message “You’re right, it’s not Newman and Redford.”
Through these unique and thoughtful gifts, Buffett brings a touch of his personality and values to the holiday season, making Christmas a little brighter for those around him.