BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY INC.

波克夏海瑟崴股份有限公司


To the Shareholders of Berkshire Hathaway Inc.:

致所有股東:

Our gain in net worth during 1995 was $5.3 billion, or

45.0%. Per-share book value grew by a little less, 43.1%,

because we paid stock for two acquisitions, increasing our shares

outstanding by 1.3%. Over the last 31 years (that is, since

present management took over) per-share book value has grown from

$19 to $14,426, or at a rate of 23.6% compounded annually.

 

1995年本公司的淨值成長了45 %約53億美元,但由於去年以發行股份的方式
併購了兩家公司,使得發行在外股份增加了1.3%,所以每股淨值僅成長了
43.1%,而總計過去31年以來,也就是自從現有經營階層接手之後,每股淨值
由當初的19元成長到現在的14,426美元,年複合成長率約為23.6%。

There's no reason to do handsprings over 1995's gains. This

was a year in which any fool could make a bundle in the stock

market. And we did. To paraphrase President Kennedy, a rising

tide lifts all yachts.

對於1995年能夠有這樣的成果並沒有什麼值得好高興的,因為在去年那樣的股
票市場狀況,任何一個笨蛋都可以很輕易在市場上有所斬獲,我們當然也不例
外,套句甘迺迪總統說過的一句話,只要一波大浪來就可以撐起所有的船隻。

Putting aside the financial results, there was plenty of

good news at Berkshire last year: We negotiated three

acquisitions of exactly the type we desire. Two of these,

Helzberg's Diamond Shops and R.C. Willey Home Furnishings, are

included in our 1995 financial statements, while our largest

transaction, the purchase of GEICO, closed immediately after the

end of the year. (I'll tell you more about all three acquisitions later in
the report.)

先不管亮麗的財務數字,去年對Berkshire來說,有許多令人振奮的好消息,我
們總共談成了三件我們渴望已久的公司購併交易,其中兩家-Helzberg鑽石店
與R.C. Willey傢具店,將可列入Berkshire 1995年的財務報表之中,而另外
一項更大的交易-買進GEICO剩餘全部的股權,則在年度結束後不久正式敲定
(在年報後面會再詳加敘述這三件併購交易)。

These new subsidiaries roughly double our revenues. Even

so, the acquisitions neither materially increased our shares

outstanding nor our debt. And, though these three operations

employ over 11,000 people, our headquarters staff grew only from

11 to 12. (No sense going crazy.)

這些新加入的子公司將使我們的營收增加一倍,然而購併之後公司流通在外的股
份或是負債並沒有增加多少;另外,雖然這三家公司旗下員工人數合計高達
11,000人,但集團總部的人員卻僅由11人增加為12人,(我們還沒有到走火
入魔的地步)。

Charlie Munger, Berkshire's Vice Chairman and my partner,

and I want to build a collection of companies - both wholly- and

partly-owned - that have excellent economic characteristics and

that are run by outstanding managers. Our favorite acquisition

is the negotiated transaction that allows us to purchase 100% of

such a business at a fair price. But we are almost as happy when

the stock market offers us the chance to buy a modest percentage

of an outstanding business at a pro-rata price well below what it

would take to buy 100%. This double-barrelled approach -

purchases of entire businesses through negotiation or purchases

of part-interests through the stock market - gives us an

important advantage over capital-allocators who stick to a single

course. Woody Allen once explained why eclecticism works: "The

real advantage of being bisexual is that it doubles your chances

for a date on Saturday night."

Berkshire的副主席,同時也是我的主要合夥人-查理.曼格以及我本人一直致
力於建立起一個擁有絕佳競爭優勢,且由傑出經理人領導的企業所組成的集團,
其中一部份是100%持有,一部份則是持有部份股權,當然我們最希望的方式還
是透過協商以公平合理的價格取得全部的股權,不過如果我們在股票市場中有機
會能夠找到以低於購併整家公司所需的平均價格,取得一家好公司相當程度的股
份的話,我們也很樂於嘗試,事實上這種雙管齊下的做法,(也就是經由協議買
下整家公司或是透過股市買進部份股權),使得我們比起其他堅持單一做法的資
金分配者來說,擁有絕佳的優勢。伍迪.艾倫曾經用以下的方式來形容為什麼會
有折衷派出現,他說:雙性戀者最大的好處就是可以讓他們在週末時,比一般人
整整多出一倍的約會機會。

Over the years, we've been Woody-like in our thinking,

attempting to increase our marketable investments in wonderful

businesses, while simultaneously trying to buy similar businesses

in their entirety. The following table illustrates our progress

on both fronts. In the tabulation, we show the marketable

securities owned per share of Berkshire at ten-year intervals. A

second column lists our per-share operating earnings (before

taxes and purchase-price adjustments but after interest and

corporate overhead) from all other activities. In other words,

the second column shows what we earned excluding the dividends,

interest and capital gains that we realized from investments.

Purchase-price accounting adjustments are ignored for reasons we

have explained at length in previous reports and which, as an act

of mercy, we won't repeat. (We'll be glad to send masochists the

earlier explanations, however.)

多年來,我們的看法一直與伍迪一致,在努力增加我們非凡企業的投資部位的同
時,也試著買下一些同樣優秀企業的全部所有權,下表充分顯示了我們在這兩方
面的進展,表中列示出在十年間Berkshire每股所擁有的股票價值以及每股在扣
除利息與營業費用之後來自其他活動的營業利益(但未扣除所得稅與購買法會計
調整數),換言之,後者所代表的是在扣除我們從股票投資所得的股利、利息收
入與資本利得之後的盈餘收益,至於購買法會計調整數不列入的原因,在以前的
年報中,我們已經花了相當的篇幅解釋過了,在這個地方我們就不再重複了,當
然如果你有被虐待的傾向的話,我們也不介意再複述一次。

Pre-tax Earnings Per Share

Marketable Securities Excluding All Income from

Year Per Share Investments

---- --------------------- --------------------------

1965 ................ $ 4 $ 4.08

1975 ................ 159 (6.48)

1985 ................ 2,443 18.86

1995 ................ 22,088 258.20

Yearly Growth Rate: 1965-95 33.4% 14.7%

These results have not sprung from some master plan that we

concocted in 1965. In a general way, we knew then what we hoped

to accomplish but had no idea what specific opportunities might

make it possible. Today we remain similarly unstructured: Over

time, we expect to improve the figures in both columns but have

no road map to tell us how that will come about.

當初在1965年時,我們並未刻意規劃什麼偉大的計畫,來達成以上的成果,我
們只知道我們應該朝這個方向做,但卻不曉得到底會有什麼樣的機會會出現,時
至今日,我們同樣是漫無目標,只能夠預期這兩欄的數字都能夠持續地精進,至
於應該要如何達成,並沒有一個明確的概念。

We proceed with two advantages: First, our operating

managers are outstanding and, in most cases, have an unusually

strong attachment to Berkshire. Second, Charlie and I have had

considerable experience in allocating capital and try to go at

that job rationally and objectively. The giant disadvantage we

face is size: In the early years, we needed only good ideas, but

now we need good big ideas. Unfortunately, the difficulty of

finding these grows in direct proportion to our financial

success, a problem that increasingly erodes our strengths.

我們擁有兩項優勢,首先,我們旗下事業的經理人都相當優秀,且大部分的經理
人都與Berkshire保持緊密的關係,第二,查理跟我本人在資金分配方面擁有相
當豐富的經驗,可以理性客觀地執行這項工作,我們所面臨最大的劣勢是規模太
大,在早年,我們只需要好的投資方案,但是現在我們需要的卻是又"大"又好的
投資方案,然而不幸的是,要找到能夠與Berkshire發展速度相匹配的公司的難
度日益升高,這個問題持續地侵蝕我們的競爭優勢。

I will have more to say about Berkshire's prospects later in

this report, when I discuss our proposed recapitalization.

在報告的後段討論有關公司所提的股權重組提案,我會再詳加說明Berkshire未
來的前景。

Acquisitions

併購活動

It may seem strange that we exult over a year in which we

made three acquisitions, given that we have regularly used these

pages to question the acquisition activities of most managers.

Rest assured, Charlie and I haven't lost our skepticism: We

believe most deals do damage to the shareholders of the acquiring

company. Too often, the words from HMS Pinafore apply: "Things

are seldom what they seem, skim milk masquerades as cream."

Specifically, sellers and their representatives invariably

present financial projections having more entertainment value

than educational value. In the production of rosy scenarios,

Wall Street can hold its own against Washington.

以往到了這裡,通常是我們質疑其他公司從事的併購活動的時間,然而大家對於
我們在去年突然發神經地進行了三件併購案可能會感到相當奇怪,不過大家倒是
可以放心,查理跟我本人從來就沒有失去我們原來保持的懷疑態度,我們堅信大
部分的併購活動會大大損及發起併購公司背後所代表的股東利益,HMS 圍裙說
得沒有錯︰事情通常不是他們外表所看到得的那樣,去脂牛奶會被冒充成奶油,
猶有甚者,賣方與其代表人總是會提出一些娛樂性質高於教育性質的財務預估數
字,在規劃出美麗的大餅這招方面,華爾街的能力可是不會輸給華府的。

In any case, why potential buyers even look at projections

prepared by sellers baffles me. Charlie and I never give them a

glance, but instead keep in mind the story of the man with an

ailing horse. Visiting the vet, he said: "Can you help me?

Sometimes my horse walks just fine and sometimes he limps." The

vet's reply was pointed: "No problem - when he's walking fine,

sell him." In the world of mergers and acquisitions, that horse

would be peddled as Secretariat.

我實在不了解為什麼有些可能的買主會相信賣方提出的預估數字,查理跟我連看
都懶得看他們一眼,我們一再謹記一位擁有跛腳馬主人的故事,他牽著病馬去給
獸醫看說到︰「你可以幫幫我嗎? 我實在是搞不懂為什麼這匹馬的表現時好時
壞。」,獸醫的回答正中要害,「沒問題,趁牠表現正常的時候,趕快把牠賣掉」,
在併購的世界中,這樣的跛腳馬往往被裝飾成聖物到處行騙。

At Berkshire, we have all the difficulties in perceiving the

future that other acquisition-minded companies do. Like they

also, we face the inherent problem that the seller of a business

practically always knows far more about it than the buyer and

also picks the time of sale - a time when the business is likely

to be walking "just fine."

在Berkshire,我們無從了解這些有意從事併購的公司到底怎麼會做出這樣的舉
動,與他們一樣,我們也面臨一個先天上的問題,那就是賣方永遠比買方了解內
情,所以很自然地,他們一定會挑選賣出的最佳時機,也就是當跛腳馬表現的都
很正常的時候。

Even so, we do have a few advantages, perhaps the greatest

being that we don't have a strategic plan. Thus we feel no need

to proceed in an ordained direction (a course leading almost

invariably to silly purchase prices) but can instead simply

decide what makes sense for our owners. In doing that, we always

mentally compare any move we are contemplating with dozens of

other opportunities open to us, including the purchase of small

pieces of the best businesses in the world via the stock market.

Our practice of making this comparison - acquisitions against

passive investments - is a discipline that managers focused

simply on expansion seldom use.

儘管如此,我們還是擁有幾項優勢,其中最有利的大概就是我們並沒有一套策略
計畫,所以我們就沒有必要依照固定的模式(一種幾乎註定會以離譜的價錢成交
的模式),而是完全以股東本身的利益為優先,在這樣的心態之下,我們隨時可
以客觀地將購併案與其他潛在的幾十種投資機會做比較,其中也包含經由股票市
場買進部份股權,我們習慣性地做比較,購併vs被動的投資,是一昧地想要擴
張經營版圖的經理人絕對做不出來的。

Talking to Time Magazine a few years back, Peter Drucker got

to the heart of things: "I will tell you a secret: Dealmaking

beats working. Dealmaking is exciting and fun, and working is

grubby. Running anything is primarily an enormous amount of

grubby detail work . . . dealmaking is romantic, sexy. That's

why you have deals that make no sense."

管理大師彼得.杜拉克幾年前在對時代雜誌的一次專訪中,切中要點的提到︰讓
我告訴你一個祕密,促成交易比辛勤工作好,促成交易刺激有趣,而工作卻盡是
一些骯髒污齪的事,經營任何事業無可避免的是一大堆繁雜的工作,而促成交易
相對的就很性感浪漫,而這也是為什麼通常交易的發生都沒什麼道理可循。

In making acquisitions, we have a further advantage: As

payment, we can offer sellers a stock backed by an extraordinary

collection of outstanding businesses. An individual or a family

wishing to dispose of a single fine business, but also wishing to

defer personal taxes indefinitely, is apt to find Berkshire stock

a particularly comfortable holding. I believe, in fact, that

this calculus played an important part in the two acquisitions

for which we paid shares in 1995.

在從事併購案時,我們還有一項優勢,那就是我們可以提供給賣方,一種背後由
眾多優秀企業所組成的股份當作對價,當一家公司的老闆或家族想要處分績優的
家族產業,同時希望相關的稅負能夠繼續遞延下去時,應該會發現Berkshire的
股票是一種相當好的選擇,事實上,我相信這樣的盤算在我們1985年促成以股
份交換的兩項購併案中扮演極關鍵的角色。

Beyond that, sellers sometimes care about placing their

companies in a corporate home that will both endure and provide

pleasant, productive working conditions for their managers. Here

again, Berkshire offers something special. Our managers operate

with extraordinary autonomy. Additionally, our ownership

structure enables sellers to know that when I say we are buying

to keep, the promise means something. For our part, we like

dealing with owners who care what happens to their companies and

people. A buyer is likely to find fewer unpleasant surprises

dealing with that type of seller than with one simply auctioning

off his business.

此外,有些賣方也會關心他們的公司是否能夠找到一個穩定可靠的美滿歸宿,可
以讓其旗下員工有一個良好的工作環境,而就這點而言,Berkshire絕對與眾不
同,我們旗下事業的經理人擁有絕對的自主權,此外我們的股權結構使得賣方可
以相信當我們在購併時,所做出的每一個承諾將會被信守,對我們而言,我們也
希望能與真正關心購併後其公司與員工會有怎樣結局的老闆打交道,就我們的經
驗而言,這類的賣主通常會較那些一心要把所擁有的公司拍賣掉的人,要讓我們
少發現許多令人不愉快的意外。

In addition to the foregoing being an explanation of our

acquisition style, it is, of course, a not-so-subtle sales pitch.

If you own or represent a business earning $25 million or more

before tax, and it fits the criteria listed on page 23, just

give me a call. Our discussion will be confidential. And if you

aren't interested now, file our proposition in the back of your

mind: We are never going to lose our appetite for buying

companies with good economics and excellent management.

以上算是對於我們購併模式的一些解釋,當然在這裡我也要打一點小廣告,如果
你擁有或代表一家每年稅前獲利超過2,500萬美元的公司,同時也符合我們表
列的各項標準的話,記得打個電話給我,我們談話的內容將會完全保密,當然若
是你現在沒有興趣,也請你把我們的這些條件記在腦海,因為我們從來就不會放
棄買下擁有優良的競爭優勢與傑出經理人的公司的意願。

Concluding this little dissertation on acquisitions, I can't

resist repeating a tale told me last year by a corporate

executive. The business he grew up in was a fine one, with a

long-time record of leadership in its industry. Its main

product, however, was distressingly glamorless. So several

decades ago, the company hired a management consultant who -

naturally - advised diversification, the then-current fad.

("Focus" was not yet in style.) Before long, the company

acquired a number of businesses, each after the consulting firm

had gone through a long - and expensive - acquisition study. And

the outcome? Said the executive sadly, "When we started, we were

getting 100% of our earnings from the original business. After

ten years, we were getting 150%."

為了將以上購併論點做一個總結,我忍不住再重複一遍,去年一位企業經理人告
訴我的一則小故事︰他提到他原來經營一家由他一手扶持的好公司,在其所處的
產業擁有長期的領導地位,只是其前景顯得有些黯淡,所以幾十年前,這家公司
特別聘請了一家管理顧問公司,很自然的管理顧問建議他們應該要多角化經營,
這在當時還是股風潮(專注本業的論調還未成形),不久之後,這家公司在經過顧
問公司一連串冗長且收費昂貴的購併調查之後,陸續買進了好幾家公司,你一定
會想要問,最後結果如何? 這位主管很難過的說,一開始我們的盈餘百分之百是
來自於我們原來的本業,但是過了十年後,這個比例變成百分之一百五十!

Helzberg's Diamond Shops

Helzberg 鑽石店

A few years back, management consultants popularized a

technique called "management by walking around" (MBWA). At

Berkshire, we've instituted ABWA (acquisitions by walking

around).

幾年前,管理顧問專家有一句相當流行的術語-走動式管理,在Berkshire我們
運用的則是走動式併購。

In May 1994, a week or so after the Annual Meeting, I was

crossing the street at 58th and Fifth Avenue in New York, when a

woman called out my name. I listened as she told me she'd been

to, and had enjoyed, the Annual Meeting. A few seconds later, a

man who'd heard the woman stop me did so as well. He turned out

to be Barnett Helzberg, Jr., who owned four shares of Berkshire

and had also been at our meeting.

1994年五月,在年度股東會過後不久,正當我在紐約第五大道與58街交叉路
口準備過馬路時,突然有一位婦人叫我的名字,我停下駐足,她提到自己很喜歡
參加Berkshire的股東會,過了一會兒,旁邊一位先生聽到這位婦人的談話,也
如法炮製的把我給攔下來,沒想到他竟是Barnett Helzberg二世,他持有
Berkshire四股的股份,同時也曾參加過我們的股東會。

In our few minutes of conversation, Barnett said he had a

business we might be interested in. When people say that, it

usually turns out they have a lemonade stand - with potential, of

course, to quickly grow into the next Microsoft. So I simply

asked Barnett to send me particulars. That, I thought to myself.

will be the end of that.

在我們短暫的交談之中,Barnett表示他擁有一家我們可能會有興趣的公司,普
通當人們這樣說的時候,一般都是指一些茶水攤,當然搞不好,也有可能會變成
微軟第二,所以我只是簡單地請Barnett將他的資料送給我,然後我想一切將就
此結束。

Not long after, Barnett sent me the financial statements of

Helzberg's Diamond Shops. The company had been started by his

grandfather in 1915 from a single store in Kansas City and had

developed by the time we met into a group with 134 stores in 23

states. Sales had grown from $10 million in 1974 to $53 million

in 1984 and $282 million in 1994. We weren't talking lemonade

stands.

過了不久,Barnett果然把Helzberg鑽石店的財務報表送給我,這家公司是在
1915年由其祖父創立,當初只不過是在堪薩斯市的一家單店,然而直到我們碰
面時,該公司已發展成在全美23個州擁有134家分店的集團,營業額也從1974
年的1,000萬美元成長到1984年的5,300萬美元,乃至於1994年的二億
8,200萬美元,這顯然不是一間茶水攤。

Barnett, then 60, loved the business but also wanted to feel

free of it. In 1988, as a step in that direction, he had brought

in Jeff Comment, formerly President of Wanamaker's, to help him

run things. The hiring of Jeff turned out to be a homerun, but

Barnett still found that he couldn't shake a feeling of ultimate

responsibility. Additionally, he owned a valuable asset that was

subject to the vagaries of a single, very competitive industry,

and he thought it prudent to diversify his family's holdings.

Barnett現年六十歲,很熱愛這項事業,但也很希望能夠減輕負擔,在1988年
他跨出第一步,找到Wanamaker前任總裁-Jeff Comment來協助他經營事
業,這個決定事後證明相當正確,但Barnett還是覺得他的壓力相當沈重,而且,
他雖然擁有價值不菲的事業,但卻面臨單一且競爭相當激烈的產業,因此他認為
有必要要分散家族持股的風險。

Berkshire was made to order for him. It took us awhile to

get together on price, but there was never any question in my

mind that, first, Helzberg's was the kind of business that we

wanted to own and, second, Jeff was our kind of manager. In

fact, we would not have bought the business if Jeff had not been

there to run it. Buying a retailer without good management is

like buying the Eiffel Tower without an elevator.

Berkshire被要求提出一個報價,我們花了一段時間才在價格上達成協議,然而
此外從頭到尾我都沒有太多的疑問,首先,Helzberg是那種我們想要擁有的事
業,第二Jeff,是屬於我們這喜歡的經理人類型,事實上,要是這項事業不是由
Jeff所經營的話,我們可能就不會考慮買下它,買下一家沒有優良管理的零售
業,就好像是買下一座沒有電梯的艾菲爾鐵塔。

We completed the Helzberg purchase in 1995 by means of a

tax-free exchange of stock, the only kind of transaction that

interested Barnett. Though he was certainly under no obligation

to do so, Barnett shared a meaningful part of his proceeds from

the sale with a large number of his associates. When someone

behaves that generously, you know you are going to be treated

right as a buyer.

我們在1995年完成對Helzberg的併購案,以免稅的股權交換方式進行,這也
是Barnett唯一願意接受的方式,雖然沒有法令規定,但是他還是將併購後的所
得與其眾多的員工一起分享,就這點而言,你可以確信對員工如此慷慨的人,相
信也會公平合理地對待新加入的買主。

The average Helzberg's store has annual sales of about $2

million, far more than competitors operating similarly-sized

stores achieve. This superior per-store productivity is the key

to Helzberg's excellent profits. If the company continues its

first-rate performance - and we believe it will - it could grow

rather quickly to several times its present size.

Helzberg單店年平均營業額大約是二百萬美元,這個數字遠比其他相同規模的
競爭對手多得多,這種高生產力正是Helzberg擁有高獲利的關鍵因素,如果這
家公司能夠繼續這種一流的表現,(我們相信絕對沒問題),則在不久的將來它將
可以發展為數倍於現在的規模。

Helzberg's, it should be added, is an entirely different

sort of operation from Borsheim's, our Omaha jewelry business,

and the two companies will operate independently of each other.

Borsheim's had an excellent year in 1995, with sales up 11.7%.

Susan Jacques, its 36-year-old CEO, had an even better year,

giving birth to her second son at the start of the Christmas

season. Susan has proved to be a terrific leader in the two

years since her promotion.

有一點必須強調的是,Helzberg經營的形態與我們原有在奧瑪哈的珠寶事業-
波仙珠寶店完全不同,兩家公司仍然會維持各自獨立的營運,波仙1995年的業
績相當理想,營收較去年又增加了11.7%,該公司總裁-Susan Jacques的表現
更是優異,去年耶誕節前夕她產下第二個兒子,在接任二年後,Susan證明自己
是位相當傑出的領導者。

R.C. Willey Home Furnishings

R.C. Willey傢具店

It was Nebraska Furniture Mart's Irv Blumkin who did the

walking around in the case of R.C. Willey, long the leading home

furnishings business in Utah. Over the years, Irv had told me

about the strengths of that company. And he had also told Bill

Child, CEO of R.C. Willey, how pleased the Blumkin family had

been with its Berkshire relationship. So in early 1995, Bill

mentioned to Irv that for estate tax and diversification reasons,

he and the other owners of R.C. Willey might be interested in

selling.

關於R.C. Willey傢具店-這家猶他州最大傢具店的併購案,這次換做是內布拉
斯加傢具店的Irv Blumkin做走動式併購,多年以來,Irv一直向我提及這家公
司所擁有的競爭力,而他也不斷地告訴R.C. Willey總裁-Bill Child,Blumkin
家族與Berkshire的合作關係是多麼地令人愉快,終於到了1995年,Bill向Irv
提及基於資產稅負與分散風險考量,他自己本身與R.C. Willey其他股東有意出
售該公司股份。

From that point forward, things could not have been simpler.

Bill sent me some figures, and I wrote him a letter indicating

my idea of value. We quickly agreed on a number, and found our

personal chemistry to be perfect. By mid-year, the merger was

completed.

從那一刻開始,事情就變得再簡單也不過了,Bill給了我一些數字,而我則回信
表達我對價值的看法,我們很快地就達成價格上的協議,而後續所產生的化學變
化可說是再完美不過了,一直到年中,整個合併案大功告成。

R.C. Willey is an amazing story. Bill took over the

business from his father-in-law in 1954 when sales were about

$250,000. From this tiny base, Bill employed Mae West's

philosophy: "It's not what you've got - it's what you do with

what you've got." Aided by his brother, Sheldon, Bill has built

the company to its 1995 sales volume of $257 million, and it now

accounts for over 50% of the furniture business in Utah. Like

Nebraska Furniture Mart, R.C. Willey sells appliances,

electronics, computers and carpets in addition to furniture.

Both companies have about the same sales volume, but NFM gets all

of its business from one complex in Omaha, whereas R.C. Willey

will open its sixth major store in the next few months.

R.C. Willey有一段相當精彩的故事,1954年當Bill從其岳父手中接下這項事業
時,該公司的年營業額只有25萬美元,從那個基礎開始,Bill運用Mae West
的哲學,重點不在於你得到的是什麼,重點在於你將得到的如何運用,在其兄弟
Sheldon的協助之下,Bill將公司的營業額一舉提升到1995年的2億5,700
萬美元,目前擁有猶他州超過50%以上的市場佔有率,就像是NFM一樣,除了
傢具以外,R.C. Willey也販賣小家電、電子資訊與地毯等商品,兩家公司的營
業額相當,只是NFM的營收全部來自在奧瑪哈惟一的一家總店,而R.C. Willey
卻即將在幾個月後成立第六家分店。

Retailing is a tough business. During my investment career,

I have watched a large number of retailers enjoy terrific growth

and superb returns on equity for a period, and then suddenly

nosedive, often all the way into bankruptcy. This shooting-star

phenomenon is far more common in retailing than it is in

manufacturing or service businesses. In part, this is because a

retailer must stay smart, day after day. Your competitor is

always copying and then topping whatever you do. Shoppers are

meanwhile beckoned in every conceivable way to try a stream of

new merchants. In retailing, to coast is to fail.

零售業的經營相當不易,在我個人的投資生涯中,我看過許多零售業曾經擁有極
高的成長率與股東權益報酬率,但是到最後,突然間表現急速下滑,很多甚至被
迫以倒閉關門收場,比起一般製造業或服務業,這種剎那間的永恆在零售業履見
不鮮,部份的原因是這些零售業者必須時時保持聰明警戒,因為你的競爭對手隨
時準備複製你的做法,然後超越你,同時消費者絕對不會吝於給予新加入業者嘗
試的機會,在零售業一但業績下滑,註定就會失敗。

In contrast to this have-to-be-smart-every-day business,

there is what I call the have-to-be-smart-once business. For

example, if you were smart enough to buy a network TV station

very early in the game, you could put in a shiftless and backward

nephew to run things, and the business would still do well for

decades. You'd do far better, of course, if you put in Tom

Murphy, but you could stay comfortably in the black without him.

For a retailer, hiring that nephew would be an express ticket to

bankruptcy.

相對於這種必須時時保持警戒的產業,還有一種我稱之為只要聰明一時的產業,
舉個例子來說,如果你在很早以前就懂得睿智地買下一家地方電視台,你甚至可
以把它交給懶惰又差勁的親人來經營,而這項事業卻仍然可以好好地經營個幾十
年,當然若是你懂得將Tom Murphy擺在正確的位置之上,你所獲得的將會更
驚人,但是對零售業來說,要是用人不當的話,就等於買了一張準備倒閉關門的
門票。

The two retailing businesses we purchased this year are

blessed with terrific managers who love to compete and have done

so successfully for decades. Like the CEOs of our other

operating units, they will operate autonomously: We want them to

feel that the businesses they run are theirs. This means no

second-guessing by Charlie and me. We avoid the attitude of the

alumnus whose message to the football coach is "I'm 100% with you

- win or tie." Our basic goal as an owner is to behave with our

managers as we like our owners to behave with us.

不過今年我們買下的這兩家零售業,卻很幸運的擁有喜歡面對競爭挑戰的經理
人,同時過去幾十年來也表現的相當優異,就像是我們旗下其他事業的經理人,
他們將可以獨立自主地經營事業,我們希望他們覺得就好像是在經營自己的事業
一樣,沒錯就是這樣,查理跟我絕沒有其他的意思,我們盡量避免像校友會常常
對足球校隊教練所說的那樣︰不論贏或是打平,我們永遠與你站在同一陣線,身
為所有權人,我們的基本原則是期望我們自己的行為與我們要求旗下的經理人的
表現一樣。

As we add more operations, I'm sometimes asked how many

people I can handle reporting to me. My answer to that is

simple: If I have one person reporting to me and he is a lemon,

that's one too many, and if I have managers like those we now

have, the number can be almost unlimited. We are lucky to have

Bill and Sheldon associated with us, and we hope that we can

acquire other businesses that bring with them managers of similar

caliber.

而在我們又新增旗下事業的同時,我被問及我一個人到底可以應付多少個經理人
同時向我報告,我的回答相當簡單,要是我只管一個經理人,而他是一顆酸檸檬,
那麼管一個人對我來說,實在是太多了,相反的,要是我所面對的是像我們現在
所擁有的經理人的話,那麼這個數目將沒有任何限制,很幸運的是,這回新加入
的是Bill跟Sheldon,而我們也很希望在不久的未來,還能有更多相同水準的經
理人加入我們的行列。

GEICO Corporation

蓋可保險營運

Right after yearend, we completed the purchase of 100% of

GEICO, the seventh largest auto insurer in the United States,

with about 3.7 million cars insured. I've had a 45-year

association with GEICO, and though the story has been told

before, it's worth a short recap here.

就在去年底,我們完成買進蓋可保險100%股權的動作,蓋可是全美第七大的汽
車保險公司,約有370萬輛汽車加保,我個人與蓋可保險的關係長達45年以
上,雖然這段故事已經說過很多遍,我認為還是有必要在這裡稍微複述一次。

I attended Columbia University's business school in 1950-51,

not because I cared about the degree it offered, but because I

wanted to study under Ben Graham, then teaching there. The time

I spent in Ben's classes was a personal high, and quickly induced

me to learn all I could about my hero. I turned first to Who's

Who in America, finding there, among other things, that Ben was

Chairman of Government Employees Insurance Company, to me an

unknown company in an unfamiliar industry.

我是在1950年-1951年間就讀於哥倫比亞商學院,當時的目的倒不在於取得
學位,重點還在於我可以受教於當時在該校任教的班哲明.葛拉漢門下,上葛拉
漢的課實在是一種享受,很快的就讓我從偶像哪裡學習到許多東西,有一回我翻
開全美名人錄,發現我的恩師葛拉漢是公務人員保險公司-GEICO的董事會主
席,對於當時的我而言,那完全是一家陌生產業的不知名公司。

A librarian next referred me to Best's Fire and Casualty

insurance manual, where I learned that GEICO was based in

Washington, DC. So on a Saturday in January, 1951, I took the

train to Washington and headed for GEICO's downtown headquarters.

To my dismay, the building was closed, but I pounded on the door

until a custodian appeared. I asked this puzzled fellow if there

was anyone in the office I could talk to, and he said he'd seen

one man working on the sixth floor.

一位好心的圖書館員,介紹我看看全美最佳火險與意外險公司手冊,我發現
GEICO的總部位於華盛頓特區,所以在1951年一月的某個星期六,我搭乘火
車前往位於華盛頓的GEICO總部,一到當地,令人失望的是總部大門深鎖,朝
著大門敲了半天,終於有位守衛前來應門,我向這位一臉疑惑的警衛先生問到,
公司是否有人可以跟我談一談,他老兄說六樓有人在加班,你可以去找他試一
試。

And thus I met Lorimer Davidson, Assistant to the President,

who was later to become CEO. Though my only credentials were

that I was a student of Graham's, "Davy" graciously spent four

hours or so showering me with both kindness and instruction. No

one has ever received a better half-day course in how the

insurance industry functions nor in the factors that enable one

company to excel over others. As Davy made clear, GEICO's method

of selling - direct marketing - gave it an enormous cost

advantage over competitors that sold through agents, a form of

distribution so ingrained in the business of these insurers that

it was impossible for them to give it up. After my session with

Davy, I was more excited about GEICO than I have ever been about

a stock.

就這樣我遇到了當時還是副總裁的Lorimer Davidson,後來他成為GEICO的
總裁,雖然我唯一的經歷背景只是葛拉漢的一名學生,大衛還是很好心的花了四
個小時左右的時間,好好地給我上了一課,我想大概沒有人能夠像我這樣,可以
幸運地接受如何經營保險業的半天課程,大衛很坦白地告訴我,GEICO的競爭
優勢在於-直接行銷,這使得該公司相較於一般競爭同業必須透過傳統的業務仲
介的經營方式所負擔的成本要低得許多,後者受限傳統無法擺脫行之有年的行銷
網路,而在上過大衛的課之後,GEICO也成為我有生以來覺得最心動的一支股
票。

When I finished at Columbia some months later and returned

to Omaha to sell securities, I naturally focused almost

exclusively on GEICO. My first sales call - on my Aunt Alice,

who always supported me 100% - was successful. But I was then a

skinny, unpolished 20-year-old who looked about 17, and my pitch

usually failed. Undaunted, I wrote a short report late in 1951

about GEICO for "The Security I Like Best" column in The

Commercial and Financial Chronicle, a leading financial

publication of the time. More important, I bought stock for my

own account.

在我從哥倫比亞大學畢業的幾個月後,我回到奧瑪哈擔任股票業務員,自然而然
的,我把重心全部擺在GEICO這隻股票之上,我作成的第一筆生意就是把它介
紹給總是最支持我的阿姨Alice,不過當時的我只是個20歲初出茅廬的小夥子,
所以我的話總是沒有人願意相信,即便如此,我還是在1951年寫了一篇最佳推
薦個股-GEICO並刊登在當時最大的金融時報專欄之上,當然最重要的是我自己
也買了這家公司的股票。

You may think this odd, but I have kept copies of every tax

return I filed, starting with the return for 1944. Checking

back, I find that I purchased GEICO shares on four occasions

during 1951, the last purchase being made on September 26. This

pattern of persistence suggests to me that my tendency toward

self-intoxication was developed early. I probably came back on

that September day from unsuccessfully trying to sell some

prospect and decided - despite my already having more than 50% of

my net worth in GEICO - to load up further. In any event, I

accumulated 350 shares of GEICO during the year, at a cost of

$10,282. At yearend, this holding was worth $13,125, more than

65% of my net worth.

你可能會覺得很奇怪,不過打從1944年開始報稅到現在,我都保留每年個人報
稅的資料,在將這些資料拿出來比對之後,我發現在1951年我總共分四次買進
GEICO股份,最後一次是在9月26日,這樣的做法讓我覺得自己很早就有自
我沈醉的傾向,印象中我那時是在向別人推銷這批股票不成之後,決定自己吃下
這批股票,儘管在當時我已將個人50%以上的身家全都押在這支股票之上,而
在加碼之後,我總共持有350股的GEICO股份,成本為10,282美元,到了年
底,這些股票的市值成為13,125美元,超過個人淨值的65%。

You can see why GEICO was my first business love. Furthermore,

just to complete this stroll down memory lane, I should add

that I earned most of the funds I used to buy GEICO shares by

delivering The Washington Post, the chief product of a

company that much later made it possible for Berkshire to turn

$10 million into $500 million.

所以大家可以看出GEICO公司可以說是我投資生涯的初戀,還有一點也相當具
有紀念價值的,我買下GEICO大部分的資金是來自於派送華盛頓郵報的收入,
而後來經由Berkshire我靠著華盛頓郵報,將1,000萬美元變成五億美元。

Alas, I sold my entire GEICO position in 1952 for $15,259,

primarily to switch into Western Insurance Securities. This act

of infidelity can partially be excused by the fact that Western

was selling for slightly more than one times its current earnings,

a p/e ratio that for some reason caught my eye. But in the next

20 years, the GEICO stock I sold grew in value to about $1.3

million, which taught me a lesson about the inadvisability of

selling a stake in an identifiably-wonderful company.

可惜的是,在1952年我以15,259美元的價錢將全部的GEICO股份出清,然
後將所得資金投入到西方保險證券公司之上,這項變心的舉動,一部份的原因是
因為西方保險證券當時的股價相當吸引人,本益比只有一倍左右,然而在往後的
二十年間,當時被我賣的的GEICO股份的價值卻成長到1,300萬美元,這樣的
結局讓我體會到絕對不能賣掉一家明顯的好公司的原則。

In the early 1970's, after Davy retired, the executives

running GEICO made some serious errors in estimating their claims

costs, a mistake that led the company to underprice its policies

- and that almost caused it to go bankrupt. The company was

saved only because Jack Byrne came in as CEO in 1976 and took

drastic remedial measures.

1970年代初期,在大衛退休後不久,繼任的管理階層犯了一連串嚴重的錯誤,
他們低估了保險理賠的成本,使得公司對外銷售保單的訂價過低,此舉導致公司
幾乎面臨倒閉的命運,所幸後來由Jack Byrne在1976年接掌公司,並採取緊
急的補救措施後,才使得公司倖免於難。

Because I believed both in Jack and in GEICO's fundamental

competitive strength, Berkshire purchased a large interest in the

company during the second half of 1976, and also made smaller

purchases later. By yearend 1980, we had put $45.7 million into

GEICO and owned 33.3% of its shares. During the next 15 years,

we did not make further purchases. Our interest in the company,

nonetheless, grew to about 50% because it was a big repurchaser

of its own shares.

由於我相信Jack以及該公司原本擁有的競爭優勢,Berkshire在1976年下半
年買進大量的GEICO股份,之後又小幅加碼,到了1980年底,我們總共投入
4,570萬美元取得該公司33.3%的股權,然而在往後的15年內,我們並沒有再
增加持股,不過由於該公司不斷地購回自家公司的股份,使得我們在GEICO的
持股比例逐漸增加到50%左右。

Then, in 1995, we agreed to pay $2.3 billion for the half of

the company we didn't own. That is a steep price. But it gives

us full ownership of a growing enterprise whose business remains

exceptional for precisely the same reasons that prevailed in

1951. In addition, GEICO has two extraordinary managers: Tony

Nicely, who runs the insurance side of the operation, and Lou

Simpson, who runs investments.

然後到了1995年,我們同意以23億美元買下另一半原來不屬於我們的股份,
這是實在是天價,不過它讓我們可以百分之百擁有一家深具成長潛力的企業,且
其競爭優勢從1951年到現在一直都維持不變,更重要的是,GEICO擁有兩位
相當優秀的經理人,一位是專門負責保險部門營運的Tony Nicely,一位是專門
負責投資部門營運的Lou Simpson。

Tony, 52, has been with GEICO for 34 years. There's no one

I would rather have managing GEICO's insurance operation. He has

brains, energy, integrity and focus. If we're lucky, he'll stay

another 34 years.

52歲的Tony在GEICO任職已有34年了,兼具智慧、精力、品格與專注力,
他是我心目中經營GEICO保險部門的不二人選,如果我們夠幸運的話,Tony
應該還能再為我們經營GEICO 34年以上。

Lou runs investments just as ably. Between 1980 and 1995,

the equities under Lou's management returned an average of 22.8%

annually vs. 15.7% for the S&P. Lou takes the same conservative,

concentrated approach to investments that we do at Berkshire, and

it is an enormous plus for us to have him on board. One point

that goes beyond Lou's GEICO work: His presence on the scene

assures us that Berkshire would have an extraordinary

professional immediately available to handle its investments if

something were to happen to Charlie and me.

另一方面,Lou在管理投資同樣出色,從1980年到1995年的這段期間,GEICO
的投資在Lou的管理之下,年度平均投資報酬率高達22.8%,同期間S&P只有
15.7%,Lou在GEICO所採取謹慎保守、專注集中的投資方式與Berkshire一
致,有他在,對Berkshire來說絕對有相當大的幫助,而他的存在同時也使得
Berkshire可以確保查理跟我本人萬一要是有任何突發狀況時,能夠有一位傑出
的專業人士可以立即接手我們的工作。

GEICO, of course, must continue both to attract good

policyholders and keep them happy. It must also reserve and

price properly. But the ultimate key to the company's success is

its rock-bottom operating costs, which virtually no competitor

can match. In 1995, moreover, Tony and his management team

pushed underwriting and loss adjustment expenses down further to

23.6% of premiums, nearly one percentage point below 1994's

ratio. In business, I look for economic castles protected by

unbreachable "moats." Thanks to Tony and his management team,

GEICO's moat widened in 1995.

GEICO如同過往一般,持續地吸引優良的保戶前來,而GEICO的服務也確實令
他們滿意,當然訂價與提列準備必須適當,但是該公司能夠成功的最重要關鍵,
還在於超低的成本結構,這實在是其他競爭同業遠遠比不上的,1995年在Tony
與其領導的經營階層的努力之下,該公司的承保損失與營業費用比率進一步壓低
到保費收入的23.6%,比起1994年又低了一個百分點,在商業的世界,我致
力於尋找擁有無可侵犯護城河所保護的企業堡壘,感謝Tony跟他的經營團隊,
GEICO周圍的護城河又更加寬了許多。

Finally, let me bring you up to date on Davy. He's now 93

and remains my friend and teacher. He continues to pay close

attention to GEICO and has always been there when the company's

CEOs - Jack Byrne, Bill Snyder and Tony - have needed him. Our

acquisition of 100% of GEICO caused Davy to incur a large tax.

Characteristically, he still warmly supported the transaction.

最後讓我向各位報告一下大衛的近況,高齡93歲的他,對我而言亦師亦友,到
現在他還是一樣關心GEICO的情況,而當公司現任的主管-Jack Byrne、Bill
Snnder與Tony有任何需要他的地方,他都會隨時挺身相助,雖然這次的併購
案將使得大衛必須承擔大筆的稅負,但他還是一樣支持這項交易。

Davy has been one of my heroes for the 45 years I've known

him, and he's never let me down. You should understand that

Berkshire would not be where it is today if Davy had not been so

generous with his time on a cold Saturday in 1951. I've often

thanked him privately, but it is fitting that I use this report

to thank him on behalf of Berkshire's shareholders.

自從我認識大衛後,45年以來他一直就是我崇拜的偶像之一,而他確實也從未
讓我失望過,大家必須了解如果沒有大衛在1951年那個寒冷的星期六慷慨解
說,Berkshire就絕對不可能會有今天的成就,多年來私底下,我已不知感謝他
多少次了,但是今天在這裡我覺得應該藉著今年的年報代替Berkshire所有的股
東向他致上深深的感謝之意。

Insurance Operations

保險事業營運

In addition to acquiring GEICO, we enjoyed other favorable

developments in insurance during 1995.

除了取得GEICO保險公司全部的股權,1995年我們其他保險事業也都有相當
不錯的發展。

As we've explained in past reports, what counts in our

insurance business is, first, the amount of "float" we generate

and, second, its cost to us. Float is money we hold but don't

own. In an insurance operation, float arises because most

policies require that premiums be prepaid and, more importantly,

because it usually takes time for an insurer to hear about and

resolve loss claims.

就像我們在過去年報跟各位解釋過的,保險事業最重要的關鍵,第一是保險浮存
金的數量,第二是它的成本,浮存金是我們持有並非我們所有,保險事業營運之
所以能有浮存金的原因在於大部分的保單都會要求保戶必須預付保險費,另外更
重要的是保險公司在被知會並真正理賠之前,通常都要經過好長的一段時間。

Typically, the premiums that an insurer takes in do not

cover the losses and expenses it must pay. That leaves it

running an "underwriting loss" - and that loss is the cost of

float. An insurance business is profitable over time if its cost

of float is less than the cost the company would otherwise incur

to obtain funds. But the business has a negative value if the

cost of its float is higher than market rates for money.

通常保險公司實際上收到的保費並不足以支應實際發生的損失與費用,所以大多
會產生承保的損失,而這就是浮存金的成本,長期而言,保險公司的浮存金成本
若能低於其他資金管道所需的成本就算是獲利,但是要是其浮存金成本高於貨幣
市場利率的話,其是否有存在的價值就有疑問。

As the numbers in the following table show, Berkshire's

insurance business has been a huge winner. For the table, we

have calculated our float - which we generate in exceptional

amounts relative to our premium volume - by adding loss reserves,

loss adjustment reserves, funds held under reinsurance assumed

and unearned premium reserves, and then subtracting agents'

balances, prepaid acquisition costs, prepaid taxes and deferred

charges applicable to assumed reinsurance. Our cost of float is

determined by our underwriting loss or profit. In those years

when we have had an underwriting profit, such as the last three,

our cost of float has been negative, which means we have

calculated our insurance earnings by adding underwriting profit

to float income.

如同下表中的數字所顯示的,Berkshire的保險事業大獲全勝,表中的浮存金,
係將所有的損失準備、損失費用調整準備與未賺取保費加總後,再扣除應付佣
金、預付購併成本及相關再保遞延費用,相對於我們的保費收入總額,我們的浮
存金部位算是相當大的,至於浮存金的成本則決定於所發生的承保損失或利益而
定,在某些年度由於我們有承保利益,所以換句話說,我們的資金成本甚至是負
的,此時我們的保險事業盈餘等於是由原先從浮存金獲取的利益再加上承保利
益。

(1) (2) Yearend Yield

Underwriting Approximate on Long-Term

Loss Average Float Cost of Funds Govt. Bonds

------------ ------------- --------------- -------------

(In $ Millions) (Ratio of 1 to 2)

1967 ...... profit 17.3 less than zero 5.50%

1968 ...... profit 19.9 less than zero 5.90%

1969 ...... profit 23.4 less than zero 6.79%

1970 ...... 0.37 32.4 1.14% 6.25%

1971 ...... profit 52.5 less than zero 5.81%

1972 ...... profit 69.5 less than zero 5.82%

1973 ...... profit 73.3 less than zero 7.27%

1974 ...... 7.36 79.1 9.30% 8.13%

1975 ...... 11.35 87.6 12.96% 8.03%

1976 ...... profit 102.6 less than zero 7.30%

1977 ...... profit 139.0 less than zero 7.97%

1978 ...... profit 190.4 less than zero 8.93%

1979 ...... profit 227.3 less than zero 10.08%

1980 ...... profit 237.0 less than zero 11.94%

1981 ...... profit 228.4 less than zero 13.61%

1982 ...... 21.56 220.6 9.77% 10.64%

1983 ...... 33.87 231.3 14.64% 11.84%

1984 ...... 48.06 253.2 18.98% 11.58%

1985 ...... 44.23 390.2 11.34% 9.34%

1986 ...... 55.84 797.5 7.00% 7.60%

1987 ...... 55.43 1,266.7 4.38% 8.95%

1988 ...... 11.08 1,497.7 0.74% 9.00%

1989 ...... 24.40 1,541.3 1.58% 7.97%

1990 ...... 26.65 1,637.3 1.63% 8.24%

1991 ...... 119.59 1,895.0 6.31% 7.40%

1992 ...... 108.96 2,290.4 4.76% 7.39%

1993 ...... profit 2,624.7 less than zero 6.35%

1994 ...... profit 3,056.6 less than zero 7.88%

1995 ...... profit 3,607.2 less than zero 5.95%

Since 1967, when we entered the insurance business, our float

has grown at an annual compounded rate of 20.7%. In more years

than not, our cost of funds has been less than nothing. This

access to "free" money has boosted Berkshire's performance in a

major way.

自從1967年我們進軍保險業以來,我們的浮存金每年以20.7%複合成長率增
加,大部分的年度,我們的資金成本都低於零以下,受惠於這些免費的資金,大
大地幫助Berkshire的績效提昇。

Any company's level of profitability is determined by three

items: (1) what its assets earn; (2) what its liabilities cost;

and (3) its utilization of "leverage" - that is, the degree to

which its assets are funded by liabilities rather than by equity.

Over the years, we have done well on Point 1, having produced high

returns on our assets. But we have also benefitted greatly - to a

degree that is not generally well-understood - because our

liabilities have cost us very little. An important reason for this

low cost is that we have obtained float on very advantageous terms.

The same cannot be said by many other property and casualty

insurers, who may generate plenty of float, but at a cost that

exceeds what the funds are worth to them. In those circumstances,

leverage becomes a disadvantage.

任何一家公司的獲利能力決定於(1)資產報酬率(2)負債的成本(3)財務槓桿的運
用-也就是其運用負債而非股東權益來支應資產取得的程度。多年以來,我們在
第一項表現的相當不錯,運用資產所產生的報酬很高,然而在另外一方面由於資
金成本極低,也使得我們受惠不少,這點就比較不為人所知,資金成本之所以可
以壓得很低,主要是由於我們可以用很有利的條件取得保險浮存金,關於這點在
其他同業身上就不敢說了,通常他們也能取得大量的保險浮存金,但是取得的成
本可能遠超過應該付的代價,在這種狀況下,運用財務槓桿反而變得相當不利。

Since our float has cost us virtually nothing over the years,

it has in effect served as equity. Of course, it differs from true

equity in that it doesn't belong to us. Nevertheless, let's assume

that instead of our having $3.4 billion of float at the end of

1994, we had replaced it with $3.4 billion of equity. Under this

scenario, we would have owned no more assets than we did during

1995. We would, however, have had somewhat lower earnings because

the cost of float was negative last year. That is, our float threw

off profits. And, of course, to obtain the replacement equity, we

would have needed to sell many new shares of Berkshire. The net

result - more shares, equal assets and lower earnings - would have

materially reduced the value of our stock. So you can understand

why float wonderfully benefits a business - if it is obtained at a

low cost.

由於多年來這些保險浮存金幾乎沒有讓我們增加任何額外的成本,所以它們實際
上等同於股本,當然不同於真正的股本,這些資金並不真正屬於我們,不過假設
在1994年我們持有的不是34億美元的浮存金,而是34億美元的股本的話,
在這種情況下,我們擁有的總資產一點都不會增加,而且我們的盈餘卻可能還會
不增反減,因為去年浮存金的成本是負的,也就是說浮存金的存在對於我們的獲
利還有額外的貢獻,而資本的增加卻代表著Berkshire必須額外再發行許多新
股,所以想當然爾,更多的股份代表著更低的每股盈餘,等於大大地減損了每股
股份的價值,所以大家應該能夠了解,為什麼浮存金對於一個企業來說如此的重
要,尤其是當它們取得的成本極低之時。

Our acquisition of GEICO will immediately increase our float

by nearly $3 billion, with additional growth almost certain. We

also expect GEICO to operate at a decent underwriting profit in

most years, a fact that will increase the probability that our

total float will cost us nothing. Of course, we paid a very

substantial price for the GEICO float, whereas virtually all of the

gains in float depicted in the table were developed internally.

在購併GEICO之後,我們的保險浮存金馬上增加近30億美元,而且展望未來
這數字還會繼續成長,此外我們也預期GEICO每年還能夠繼續擁有相當的承保
獲利,這等於保證這些浮存金不但不須負擔資金成本還能額外貢獻給我們獲利,
當然就內部轉撥而言,我們還是必須支付GEICO一筆相當的對價以取得浮存
金。

Our enthusiasm over 1995's insurance results must be tempered

once again because we had our third straight year of good fortune

in the super-cat business. In this operation, we sell policies

that insurance and reinsurance companies buy to protect themselves

from the effects of mega-catastrophes. Since truly major

catastrophes occur infrequently, our super-cat business can be

expected to show large profits in most years but occasionally to

record a huge loss. In other words, the attractiveness of our

super-cat business will take many years to measure. We know that

the results of years like the past three will be at least partially

offset by some truly terrible year in the future. We just hope

that "partially" turns out to be the proper adverb.

對於1995年我們的保險營運績效的興奮程度可能要再度稍微降溫一下,原因在
於我們的霹靂貓再保業務連續第三年大放異彩,我們出售保單給保險公司與再保
公司以分散其面臨超大型意外災害所可能承擔的風險,由於真正重大的災害並不
常發生,所以我們的霹靂貓業務有可能在連續幾年賺大錢後,才突然發生重大的
損失,換句話說,我們這項霹靂貓業務到底有多吸引人可能要花上好幾年才有辦
法看得清,我們很清楚的了解過去三年來優異的成果一定會被未來某些悲慘的年
度給抵消掉部份的效果,當然我們希望所謂的"部份"是個適當的形容詞。

There were plenty of catastrophes last year, but no super-cats

of the insured variety. The Southeast had a close call when Opal,

sporting winds of 150 miles per hour, hovered off Florida.

However, the storm abated before hitting land, and so a second

Andrew was dodged. For insurers, the Kobe earthquake was another

close call: The economic damage was huge - perhaps even a record -

but only a tiny portion of it was insured. The insurance industry

won't always be that lucky.

去年天災不斷,但沒有一個踰越霹靂貓的界限,曾有一個強風Opal在美國東南
部以每小時150英哩的速度徘徊在佛羅里達附近,所幸它在登陸前及時轉弱,
而避免成為第二個Andrew颶風,另外對保險公司來說,阪神大地震同樣令人
印象深刻,不可諱言,那次造成的總體經濟損失可算是空前,不過由於其中僅有
一小部份有保險,所以最後真正保險理賠的金額有限,當然保險業不可能永遠都
那麼幸運。

Ajit Jain is the guiding genius of our super-cat business and

writes important non-cat business as well. In insurance, the term

"catastrophe" is applied to an event, such as a hurricane or

earthquake, that causes a great many insured losses. The other

deals Ajit enters into usually cover only a single large loss. A

simplified description of three transactions from last year will

illustrate both what I mean and Ajit's versatility. We insured: (1)

The life of Mike Tyson for a sum that is large initially and that,

fight-by-fight, gradually declines to zero over the next few years;

(2) Lloyd's against more than 225 of its "names" dying during the

year; and (3) The launch, and a year of orbit, of two Chinese

satellites. Happily, both satellites are orbiting, the Lloyd's folk

avoided abnormal mortality, and if Mike Tyson looked any healthier,

no one would get in the ring with him.

Ajit Jain可說是我們霹靂貓業務的天縱英才,當然他同時也負責許多重要的非霹
靂貓業務,在保險業所謂的災害,係指可能導致許多理賠損失的事件,諸如颶風
或地震等,另外Ajit也負責受理一些單一重大事件的投保,以下三件個案應該
可充分以說明我所說的意思,同時展現Ajit的多才多藝,我們受理(1)拳王泰森
的生命險,當然一開始金額相當的高,但隨著一場場的比賽在幾年後逐漸遞減到
最後變成零(2)英國最大保險勞埃氏總計225人的生命險以及(3)保證兩顆中國
衛星的發射及在軌道上週轉一年;結果所幸中國衛星發射順利,並在軌道上正常
運轉,同時勞埃氏的死亡率還算正常,而拳王泰森看起來再健康不過,看不出有
誰可以從他手上搶下冠軍戒指。

Berkshire is sought out for many kinds of insurance, both

super-cat and large single-risk, because: (1) our financial

strength is unmatched, and insureds know we can and will pay our

losses under the most adverse of circumstances; (2) we can supply a

quote faster than anyone in the business; and (3) we will issue

policies with limits larger than anyone else is prepared to write.

Most of our competitors have extensive reinsurance treaties and

lay off much of their business. While this helps them avoid shock

losses, it also hurts their flexibility and reaction time. As you

know, Berkshire moves quickly to seize investment and acquisition

opportunities; in insurance we respond with the same exceptional

speed. In another important point, large coverages don't frighten

us but, on the contrary, intensify our interest. We have offered a

policy under which we could have lost $1 billion; the largest

coverage that a client accepted was $400 million.

Berkshire目前積極尋求各類保險業務,包含霹靂貓與大型單一風險,因為(1)
我們無與倫比的財務實力,使得投保客戶可以確定不論在多糟的狀況下,他們都
可以順利獲得理賠(2)我們可以最快的速度向客戶完成報價(3)我們可以簽下比其
他保險公司金額更高的保單,其他競爭同業大多都有範圍廣闊的再保條款,並將
大部分的業務分保出去,雖然這樣的做法可以讓他們避免重大的損失意外,但卻
也破壞掉他們的彈性與反應時間,大家都知道,Berkshire抓住投資與購併的動
作向來相當的快,在保險業務方面我們的反應速度也是如此,另外還有很重要的
一點,高額的保險上限嚇唬不了我們,相反地更能引起我們的興趣,我們可以接
受的最高理賠上限是10億美元,相較之下,其他同業所能容忍的最高限度僅為
4億美元。

We will get hit from time to time with large losses. Charlie

and I, however, are quite willing to accept relatively volatile

results in exchange for better long-term earnings than we would

otherwise have had. In other words, we prefer a lumpy 15% to a

smooth 12%. Since most managers opt for smoothness, we are left

with a competitive advantage that we try to maximize. We do,

though, monitor our aggregate exposure in order to keep our "worst

case" at a level that leaves us comfortable.

總有一天我們會碰上大麻煩,但是查理跟我本人卻相當可以接受這種變動劇烈的
結局,只要長期來說我們的報酬可以令人滿意,講的再白一點,我們比較喜歡上
下變動的15%,更甚於平淡無奇的12%,而正因為大部分的經理人傾向平淡,
這使得我們長期報酬極大化的目標享有絕對的競爭優勢,當然我們會密切注意避
免讓最壞的狀況超越我們可以容忍的範圍。

Indeed, our worst case from a "once-in-a-century" super-cat is

far less severe - relative to net worth - than that faced by many

well-known primary companies writing great numbers of property

policies. These insurers don't issue single huge-limit policies as

we do, but their small policies, in aggregate, can create a risk of

staggering size. The "big one" would blow right through the

reinsurance covers of some of these insurers, exposing them to

uncapped losses that could threaten their survival. In our case,

losses would be large, but capped at levels we could easily handle.

事實上,即使是發生百年一次的超級大災難的最壞情況下,我們淨值所可能受到
的損害程度可以遠比其他簽下一大堆產物意外險保單的知名保險業者要來的輕
微許多,雖然這些同業沒有像我們一樣簽下單一極高上限的保單,但是所謂積沙
成塔,他們累積的小額保單卻可能造成無以彌補的後果,因為後者可能會直接穿
越再保險的防護罩,使他們必須承擔沒有上限的損失與生存的危機,至於我們,
損失數字雖然很大,但卻是在我們可以輕易化解的範圍之內。

Prices are weakening in the super-cat field. That is

understandable considering the influx of capital into the

reinsurance business a few years ago and the natural desire of

those holding the capital to employ it. No matter what others may

do, we will not knowingly write business at inadequate rates. We

unwittingly did this in the early 1970's and, after more than 20

years, regularly receive significant bills stemming from the

mistakes of that era. My guess is that we will still be getting

surprises from that business 20 years from now. A bad reinsurance

contract is like hell: easy to enter and impossible to exit.

近年來霹靂貓保單的價格一直萎糜不振,這點可以理解的原因在於幾年前大量的
資金流進再保業界競逐有限的保單生意,然而不管別人怎麼做,我們是絕對不會
以不合理的價格賠錢做生意的,早在1970年代初期,我們就一直在不知情的情
況下,犯下類似的錯誤,結果在往後的二十年內,因為那個年代錯誤所付出的代
價,化成理賠損失的帳單不斷地湧進本公司,而我有預感我們將會為20年前所
犯的錯誤繼續付出代價,一張糟糕的再保合約就像是地獄一樣,進去容易,但想
要出來可就難了。

I actively participated in those early reinsurance decisions,

and Berkshire paid a heavy tuition for my education in the

business. Unfortunately, reinsurance students can't attend school

on scholarship. GEICO, incidentally, suffered a similar,

disastrous experience in the early 1980's, when it plunged

enthusiastically into the writing of reinsurance and large risks.

GEICO's folly was brief, but it will be cleaning things up for at

least another decade. The well-publicized problems at Lloyd's

further illustrate the perils of reinsurance and also underscore

how vital it is that the interests of the people who write

insurance business be aligned - on the downside as well as the

upside - with those of the people putting up the capital. When

that kind of symmetry is missing, insurers almost invariably run

into trouble, though its existence may remain hidden for some time.

早年我積極參與再保業務,結果使得Berkshire必須為我這一堂課付出昂貴的學
費,更不幸的是,修再保課程的學生根本沒有辦法拿到獎學金,碰巧的是GEICO
在1980年代初期,也面臨過類似悲慘的命運,當時該公司一頭熱地栽進再保與
大型災害保險的業務,雖然GEICO愚昧的舉動為期不久,但是它卻必須花費十
年以上的工夫收拾殘局,著名的英國勞埃氏保險的困境進一步說明了不當再保可
能造成的災難以及共同投入資金參與保險業務出資人的利益,基本上就是一個生
命共同體,不管是在順境與逆境皆然,一旦人們失去對於這點觀念的聚焦,保險
業者就註定會發生問題,而且通常必須經歷一段時間後,問題才會逐漸地浮上臺
面。

A small, apocryphal story about an insurance CEO who was

visited by an analyst tells a lot about this industry. To the

analyst's questions about his business, the CEO had nothing but

gloomy answers: Rates were ridiculously low; the reserves on his

balance sheet weren't adequate for ordinary claims, much less those

likely to arise from asbestos and environmental problems; most of

his reinsurers had long since gone broke, leaving him holding the

sack. But then the CEO brightened: "Still, things could be a lot

worse," he said. "It could be my money." At Berkshire, it's our

money.

有一段小故事是有關一位保險公司總裁接受一位分析師訪問談到保險業的經
營,面對分析師詢問關於其公司的情況時,得到的答案顯得相當無奈,費率低得
離譜、財務報表上所提的準備連一般理賠都不夠,更不要說其他那些因為石綿與
環保問題所引發的重大損害賠償,想到許多以往依靠的再保公司都已倒閉,只剩
他一個人獨撐大局,突然間這位總裁略微釋懷的說到,當然情況有可能會更糟,
再來可能就會輪到我的荷包,天啊!在Berkshire,這可是我們的荷包呢!

Berkshire's other insurance operations, though relatively

small, performed magnificently in 1995. National Indemnity's

traditional business had a combined ratio of 84.2 and developed, as

usual, a large amount of float compared to premium volume. Over

the last three years, this segment of our business, run by Don Wurster, has had an average combined ratio of 85.6. Our homestate

operation, managed by Rod Eldred, grew at a good rate in 1995 and

achieved a combined ratio of 81.4. Its three-year combined ratio

is an amazing 82.4. Berkshire's California workers' compensation

business, run by Brad Kinstler, faced fierce price-cutting in 1995

and lost a great many renewals when we refused to accept inadequate

rates. Though this operation's volume dropped materially, it

produced an excellent underwriting profit. Finally, John Kizer, at

Central States Indemnity, continues to do an extraordinary job.

His premium volume was up 23% in 1995, and underwriting profit grew

by 59%. Ajit, Don, Rod, Brad and John are all under 45, an

embarrassing fact demolishing my theory that managers only hit

their stride after they reach 70.

Berkshire其他的保險營運,雖然規模相對較小,但在1995年的表現卻同樣極
為出色,國家產物保險傳統業務的綜合比率只有84.2,同時以其保費收入來看,
還貢獻了大量的浮存金,過去三年以來,這個由Don Wurster負責的部門平均
的綜合比率只有85.6;另外由Rod Eldred負責的Homestate業務也有相當幅
度的成長,去年的綜合比率更只有81.4,過去三年平均為82.4;由Brad負責
的加州勞工退休基金在1995年面對激烈的價格競爭,同時還因為拒絕不合理的
降價要求而失去續約的機會,雖然此舉使得業務量大幅縮減,但整體的承保利益
仍然相當可觀;最後負責中央州立產險公司營運的John則依然表現出色,1995
年的保費收入成長23%,承保利益更大幅增加59%,Ajit、Don、Rod、Brad
與John的年紀都在45歲以下,這種情況也讓我以往認為經理人要到70之後
才能隨心所欲的論點破功。

To sum up, we entered 1995 with an exceptional insurance

operation of moderate size. By adding GEICO, we entered 1996 with

a business still better in quality, much improved in its growth

prospects, and doubled in size. More than ever, insurance is our

core strength.

總的來說,1995年我們規模適中的保險事業繳出漂亮的成績單,而展望1996
年,在GEICO加入之後,在維持保險事業原有的品質之下,規模與成長皆可期,
較之以往,保險事業已成為我們核心競爭事業。

Sources of Reported Earnings

帳列盈餘的來源

The table below shows the main sources of Berkshire's reported

earnings. In this presentation, purchase-premium charges are not

assigned to the specific businesses to which they apply, but are

instead aggregated and shown separately. This procedure lets you

view the earnings of our businesses as they would have been

reported had we not purchased them. This form of presentation

seems to us to be more useful to investors and managers than one

utilizing GAAP, which requires purchase-premiums to be charged off,

business-by-business. The total earnings we show in the table are,

of course, identical to the GAAP total in our audited financial

statements.

下表顯示Berkshire帳列盈餘的主要來源,在這張表中商譽的攤銷數與購買法會
計調整數會從個別被投資公司分離出來,單獨加總列示,之所以這樣做是為了讓
旗下各事業的盈餘狀況,不因我們的投資而有所影響,過去我一再地強調我們認
為這樣的表達方式,較之一般公認會計原則要求以個別企業基礎做調整,不管是
對投資者或是管理者來說,更有幫助,當然最後損益加總的數字仍然會與經會計
師查核的數字一致。

(in millions)

---------------------------------------

Berkshire's Share

of Net Earnings

(after taxes and

Pre-Tax Earnings minority interests)

------------------ ------------------

1995 1994 1995 1994

-------- -------- -------- --------

Operating Earnings:

Insurance Group:

Underwriting ............... $ 20.5 $129.9 $ 11.3 $ 80.9

Net Investment Income ...... 501.6 419.4 417.7 350.5

Buffalo News ................. 46.8 54.2 27.3 31.7

Fechheimer ................... 16.9 14.3 8.8 7.1

Finance Businesses ........... 20.8 22.1 12.6 14.6

Home Furnishings ............. 29.7(1) 17.4 16.7(1) 8.7

Jewelry ...................... 33.9(2) ---(3) 19.1(2) ---(3)

Kirby ........................ 50.2 42.3 32.1 27.7

Scott Fetzer Manufacturing Group 34.1 39.5 21.2 24.9

See's Candies ................ 50.2 47.5 29.8 28.2

Shoe Group ................... 58.4 85.5 37.5 55.8

World Book ................... 8.8 24.7 7.0 17.3

Purchase-Price Premium Charges (27.0) (22.6) (23.4) (19.4)

Interest Expense(4) .......... (56.0) (60.1) (34.9) (37.3)

Shareholder-Designated

Contributions ............ (11.6) (10.4) (7.0) (6.7)

Other ........................ 37.4 35.7 24.4 22.3

-------- -------- -------- --------

Operating Earnings ............. 814.7 839.4 600.2 606.2

Sales of Securities ............ 194.1 91.3 125.0 61.1

Decline in Value of

USAir Preferred Stock ...... --- (268.5) --- (172.6)

--------- -------- -------- --------

Total Earnings - All Entities $1,008.8 $662.2 $725.2 $494.8

======= ======= ====== ======

(1) Includes R.C. Willey from June 29, 1995.
(1)包含R.C. Willey 1995年6月29日以後的盈餘

(2) Includes Helzberg's from April 30, 1995.
(2)包含Helzberg 1995年4月30日以後的盈餘

(3) Jewelry earnings were included in "Other" in 1994.

(3)珠寶事業1994年的盈餘包含在其他項目之下

(4) Excludes interest expense of Finance Businesses.

(4)扣除金融事業的利息支出

A large amount of information about these businesses is given

on pages 41-52, where you will also find our segment earnings

reported on a GAAP basis. In addition, on pages 57-63, we have

rearranged Berkshire's financial data into four segments on a non-

GAAP basis, a presentation that corresponds to the way Charlie and

I think about the company. Our intent is to supply you with the

financial information that we would wish you to give us if our

positions were reversed.

在年報中你可以找到依照一般公認會計原則編製,詳細的部門別資訊,至於我們
的目的是希望能夠給大家,所有查理跟我認為在評估Berkshire價值時,應該必
要的資訊。

At Berkshire, we believe in Charlie's dictum - "Just tell me

the bad news; the good news will take care of itself" - and that is

the behavior we expect of our managers when they are reporting to

us. Consequently, I also owe you - Berkshire's owners - a report

on three operations that, though they continued to earn decent (or

better) returns on invested capital, experienced a decline in

earnings last year. Each encountered a different type of problem.

在Berkshire,我們相信查理的格言,只管告訴我壞消息,因為好消息絕對會不
脛而走,而這也是我們希望旗下事業經理人向我們報告時所採取的態度,也因此
身為Berkshire負責人的我有義務向大家報告,去年總共有三個事業營運發生問
題,雖然投資在他們身上的資金所取得的報酬率仍然相當的不錯(或甚至是更
好),但每個事業都面臨了不同的問題。

Our shoe business operated in an industry that suffered

depressed earnings throughout last year, and many of our

competitors made only marginal profits or worse. That means we at

least maintained, and in some instances widened, our competitive

superiority. So I have no doubt that our shoe operations will

climb back to top-grade earnings in the future. In other words,

though the turn has not yet occurred, we believe you should view

last year's figures as reflecting a cyclical problem, not a secular

one.

去年一整年我們的鞋類事業一直面臨產業困境,有些同業只能勉強賺取蠅頭小
利,甚至是虧錢,當然這也代表在某個層面來說,至少我們與同業間仍維持著甚
至是擴大了競爭差距,所以我依然堅信在未來,我們的鞋類事業一定能夠回復以
往的高獲利,換句話說,雖然目前尚未看到反轉的跡象,但我認為大家可以將去
年的數字視為景氣即將反轉的底部,而不是永遠的谷底。

The Buffalo News, though still doing very well in comparison

to other newspapers, is another story. In this case, industry

trends are not good. In the 1991 Annual Report, I explained that

newspapers had lost a notch in their economic attractiveness from

the days when they appeared to have a bullet-proof franchise.

Today, the industry retains its excellent economics, but has lost

still another notch. Over time, we expect the competitive strength

of newspapers to gradually erode, though the industry should

nevertheless remain a fine business for many years to come.

至於水牛城新聞報的表現,較之同業雖然還是相當不錯,卻也面臨另外的問題,
那就是報業前景不佳,在1991年的年報中,我就曾說過報業早已失去以往金剛
不摧的特許事業所享有的競爭優勢,雖然時至今日,報業經營還算穩定,但卻逐
漸失去另一項競爭優勢,我們預期報業的競爭力將與日劇減,雖然這產業在未來
可見的年度內還是一項不錯的投資。

Berkshire's most difficult problem is World Book, which

operates in an industry beset by increasingly tough competition

from CD-ROM and on-line offerings. True, we are still profitable,

a claim that perhaps no other print encyclopedia can make. But our

sales and earnings trends have gone in the wrong direction. At the

end of 1995, World Book made major changes in the way it

distributes its product, stepped up its efforts with electronic

products and sharply reduced its overhead costs. It will take time

for us to evaluate the effects of these initiatives, but we are

confident they will significantly improve our viability.

在Berkshire目前狀況最多的就屬世界百科全書,面臨來自CD與網路激烈的競
爭,雖然我們仍能勉強維持獲利,(大概沒有其他百科全書業者敢這樣說),不過
業績與獲利卻直線下滑,因此在1995年底,世界百科全書決定大幅改變行銷方
式,加強電子產品內容並大幅降低營運成本,當然這些做法的成效還有待觀察,
不過我個人相信此舉絕對有助於我們繼續維持生存。

All of our operations, including those whose earnings fell

last year, benefit from exceptionally talented and dedicated

managers. Were we to have the choice of any other executives now

working in their industries, there is not one of our managers we

would replace.

我們旗下所有的事業,也包含幾個獲利大幅衰退的公司,一直都由傑出專注的經
理人所經營,就算我們有機會能夠挖到業界最好的經理人,但我們還是不會考慮
將給他們取代掉。

Many of our managers don't have to work for a living, but

simply go out and perform every day for the same reason that

wealthy golfers stay on the tour: They love both doing what they

do and doing it well. To describe them as working may be a

misnomer - they simply prefer spending much of their time on a

productive activity at which they excel to spending it on leisure

activities. Our job is to provide an environment that will keep

them feeling this way, and so far we seem to have succeeded:

Thinking back over the 1965-95 period, I can't recall that a single

key manager has left Berkshire to join another employer.

我們有許多經理人根本就不必靠這份工作過活,但每天還是一樣全力以赴,就像
是口袋麥克麥克的職業高爾夫球選手還是繼續打巡迴賽一樣,他們喜歡現在從事
的工作,而且把它做的很好,把他們形容是在工作或許是個錯誤的名詞,他們只
不過是把他們大部分的時間花在他們所擅長的生產活動而非休閒活動之上而
已,而我的工作則是努力維持一個讓他們有這樣感覺的環境,截至目前為止,我
們做的還算是相當成功,回顧過去1965年到1995年這三十年間,Berkshire
沒有任何一位主要經理人發生琵琶別抱的情況。

Common Stock Investments

股票投資

Below we present our common stock investments. Those with a

market value of more than $600 million are itemized.

下表是我們超過六億美元以上的普通股投資。


12/31/95

Shares Company Cost Market

---------- ------- -------- --------

(dollars in millions)

49,456,900 American Express Company ............. $1,392.7 $2,046.3

20,000,000 Capital Cities/ABC, Inc. ............. 345.0 2,467.5

100,000,000 The Coca-Cola Company ................ 1,298.9 7,425.0

12,502,500 Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp.

("Freddie Mac") ................... 260.1 1,044.0

34,250,000 GEICO Corp. .......................... 45.7 2,393.2

48,000,000 The Gillette Company ................. 600.0 2,502.0

6,791,218 Wells Fargo & Company ................ 423.7 1,466.9

Others ............................... 1,379.0 2,655.4

-------- ---------

Total Common Stocks .................. $5,745.1 $22,000.3

======= =======

We continue in our Rip Van Winkle mode: Five of our six top

positions at yearend 1994 were left untouched during 1995. The

sixth was American Express, in which we increased our ownership to

about 10%.

我們繼續做著我們的李伯大夢,在1994年持有的前六大持股中,有五支在1995
年維持不動,唯一有變動的是美國運通,我們將持有股權比例提高到10%左右。

In early 1996, two major events affected our holdings: First,

our purchase of the GEICO stock we did not already own caused that

company to be converted into a wholly-owned subsidiary. Second, we

exchanged our Cap Cities shares for a combination of cash and

Disney stock.

在1996年初期,有兩個重大事件影響到我們的持股,首先在買下GEICO剩餘
一半的股份之後,GEICO變成我們百分之百持有的子公司,第二,我們將資本
城股份轉換成現金與迪士尼股票。

In the Disney merger, Cap Cities shareholders had a choice of

actions. If they chose, they could exchange each of their Cap

Cities shares for one share of Disney stock plus $65. Or they

could ask for - though not necessarily get - all cash or all stock,

with their ultimate allotment of each depending on the choices made

by other shareholders and certain decisions made by Disney. For

our 20 million shares, we sought stock, but do not know, as this

report goes to press, how much we were allocated. We are certain,

however, to receive something over 20 million Disney shares. We

have also recently bought Disney stock in the market.

在迪士尼的併購案中,原來資本城的股東可以有好幾種選擇,他們可以選擇將原
有一股轉換成迪士尼的一股外加65美元現金,或者他們可以要求全部換成現金
或是股票,但是最終可獲得的分配結果還要視其他股東的選擇以及迪士尼本身的
態度而定,以我們持有2,000萬股來說,我們選擇全部轉換成股票,不過到年
報截止日為止,我們還不確定到底可以分配到多少股份,當然可以確定的是最後
收到的股數一定會超過2,000萬股,除此之外,我們還透過公開市場繼續收購
迪士尼的股份。

One more bit of history: I first became interested in Disney

in 1966, when its market valuation was less than $90 million, even

though the company had earned around $21 million pre-tax in 1965

and was sitting with more cash than debt. At Disneyland, the $17

million Pirates of the Caribbean ride would soon open. Imagine my

excitement - a company selling at only five times rides!

再透露一點歷史,我第一次對迪士尼發生興趣是在1966年,當時它的股票市值
還不到9,000萬美元,雖然該公司在前一年度-1965年的稅前淨利是2,100萬
美元,而且所擁有的現金甚至多過於負債,當時迪斯奈樂園斥資1,700萬美元
的加勒比海海盜船才剛要開幕,而這家公司的賣價只不過是這艄海盜船的五倍!

Duly impressed, Buffett Partnership Ltd. bought a significant

amount of Disney stock at a split-adjusted price of 31?per share.

That decision may appear brilliant, given that the stock now sells

for $66. But your Chairman was up to the task of nullifying it:

In 1967 I sold out at 48?per share.

印象深刻的我,利用巴菲特合夥企業的資金,買進一大筆的股份,照分割調整後
的平均成本約31美元一股,這樣的決定顯然很正確,因為現在的股價大概是
66美元一股,各位的董事長卻在1967年以每股48美元將這批股票賣出,使
得其效果大打折扣。

Oh well - we're happy to be once again a large owner of a

business with both unique assets and outstanding management.

不過還好,繞了半天,我們很高興能夠再度成為這家擁有獨特資產與傑出管理階
層公司的大股東。

Convertible Preferred Stocks

可轉換特別股

As many of you will remember, Berkshire made five private

purchases of convertible preferred stocks during the 1987-91 period

and the time seems right to discuss their status. Here are the

particulars:

大家可能都還記得,Berkshire在1987年到1991年透過與公司私下協議的方
式,取得五種可轉換特別股,現在的時機很適合來談談它們現在的狀況,以下是
一些重點摘要。

Dividend Year of Market

Company Rate Purchase Cost Value

------- -------- -------- ------ --------

(dollars in millions)

Champion International Corp. ... 9 1/4% 1989 $300 $388(1)

First Empire State Corp. ....... 9% 1991 40 110

The Gillette Company ........... 8 3/4% 1989 600 2,502(2)

Salomon Inc .................... 9% 1987 700 728(3)

USAir Group, Inc. .............. 9 1/4% 1989 358 215

(1) Proceeds from sale of common we received through conversion in 1995.

(2) 12/31/95 value of common we received through conversion in 1991.

(3) Includes $140 we received in 1995 from partial redemption.

(1)係1995年轉換為普通股後,出售股票的收入。

(2)係1991年轉換為普通股後的股票市值。

(3)包含1995年收到部份贖回的1.4億美元收入。

In each case we had the option of sticking with these

preferreds as fixed-income securities or converting them into

common stock. Initially, their value to us came primarily from

their fixed-income characteristics. The option we had to convert

was a kicker.

每一個案子我們都有權選擇維持原來以固定收益證券為主的特別股形式或是將
它們轉換成普通股,剛開始它們的價值主要來自於固定收益證券的特質,至於其
所附帶的轉換權利只不過具有加分的作用而已。

Our $300 million private purchase of American Express "Percs"

- described in the 1991 Annual Report - is not included in the

table because that security was a modified form of common stock

whose fixed-income characteristics contributed only a minor portion

of its initial value. Three years after we bought them, the Percs

automatically were converted to common stock. In contrast, the

five securities in the table were set to become common stocks only

if we wished them to - a crucial difference.

另外在1991年的年報中已經介紹過,我們透過私募所取得的美國運通Percs,
並未包含在本表之中,其原因主要是因為Percs事實上是一種普通股的修訂版,
其固定收益的特性只佔其原始價值的一小部份,在我們買下它們的三年後已經自
動轉為美國運通的普通股,相對的,本表所提到的五種有價證券只有在我們有意
願的狀況下,才會轉變成一般的普通股,基本上這之間有相當大的差異。

When we purchased our convertible securities, I told you that

we expected to earn after-tax returns from them that "moderately"

exceeded what we could earn from the medium-term fixed-income

securities they replaced. We beat this expectation - but only

because of the performance of a single issue. I also told you that

these securities, as a group, would "not produce the returns we can

achieve when we find a business with wonderful economic prospects."

Unfortunately, that prediction was fulfilled. Finally, I said

that "under almost any conditions, we expect these preferreds to

return us our money plus dividends." That's one I would like to

have back. Winston Churchill once said that "eating my words has

never given me indigestion." My assertion, however, that it was

almost impossible for us to lose money on our preferreds has caused

me some well-deserved heartburn.

當我們買進這些可轉換證券時,我曾經跟各位提到我們預期這些投資的稅後報酬
率應該可以略高於其所取代的中期固定收益證券,幸運的是結果超乎預期,原因
是因為其中有一個案子發了,同時我也提醒過各位,這些投資可能無法與真正找
到具有競爭優勢好公司的投資相比,不幸的就這點而言,我一語中的,最後我還
說過,不論在任何狀況下,我們完全可以預期這些投資一定能夠回收本金再加上
股息,這句話我想要收回來,雖然英國前首相邱吉爾曾說過︰把說過的話吞回
去,並不會讓人消化不良,但是關於我說過"特別股一定不會讓我們賠錢的這句
話"確實讓我感到心痛。

Our best holding has been Gillette, which we told you from the

start was a superior business. Ironically, though, this is also

the purchase in which I made my biggest mistake - of a kind,

however, never recognized on financial statements.

其中表現最佳的是吉列特別股,從一開始我就跟各位說過這是一家相當好的公
司,不過諷刺的是,這也是我犯過的一個大錯之一,雖然這項錯誤從未反應在財
務報表之上。

We paid $600 million in 1989 for Gillette preferred shares

that were convertible into 48 million (split-adjusted) common

shares. Taking an alternative route with the $600 million, I

probably could have purchased 60 million shares of common from the

company. The market on the common was then about $10.50, and given

that this would have been a huge private placement carrying

important restrictions, I probably could have bought the stock at a

discount of at least 5%. I can't be sure about this, but it's

likely that Gillette's management would have been just as happy to

have Berkshire opt for common.

我們在1989年以六億美元取得吉列可轉換特別股,之後並轉換為4,800萬股
吉列的普通股(分割調整後),然而要是當初我們選擇直接投資該公司的普通股,
這筆錢將可以買到6,000萬股,因為吉列當時每股的市價為10.5美元,而由於
那次的私募對於我們有諸多的限制條款,所以拿到5%左右的折扣應該不成問
題,我不知道這樣說對不對,我認為當時要是我們選擇直接以取得普通股的方式
投資,該公司的管理階層可能會更高興。

But I was far too clever to do that. Instead, for less than

two years, we received some extra dividend income (the difference

between the preferred's yield and that of the common), at which

point the company - quite properly - called the issue, moving to do

that as quickly as was possible. If I had negotiated for common

rather than preferred, we would have been better off at yearend

1995 by $625 million, minus the "excess" dividends of about $70

million.

可惜人算不如天算,雖然在這兩年內我們另外還收到額外的特別股股息(這是普
通股所沒有的),如果當初我選擇普通股而非特別股的話,截至1995年止我們
將可多獲得6.25億美元的利益,當然還要再扣除7,000萬美元的特別股股息。

In the case of Champion, the ability of the company to call

our preferred at 115% of cost forced a move out of us last August

that we would rather have delayed. In this instance, we converted

our shares just prior to the pending call and offered them to the

company at a modest discount.

另外在Champion這個案子,由於公司可以以115%的價位贖回我們持有的特
別股,使得我們被迫於去年八月有所動作,這個案子就在公司即將有權動用贖回
權的前夕,以略微打折的價格申請轉換為普通股。

Charlie and I have never had a conviction about the paper

industry - actually, I can't remember ever owning the common stock

of a paper producer in my 54 years of investing - so our choice in

August was whether to sell in the market or to the company.

Champion's management had always been candid and honorable in

dealing with us and wished to repurchase common shares, so we

offered our stock to the company. Our Champion capital gain was

moderate - about 19% after tax from a six-year investment - but the

preferred delivered us a good after-tax dividend yield throughout

our holding period. (That said, many press accounts have

overstated the after-tax yields earned by property-casualty

insurance companies on dividends paid to them. What the press has

failed to take into account is a change in the tax law that took

effect in 1987 and that significantly reduced the dividends

received credit applicable to insurers. For details, see our 1986

Annual Report.)

查理跟我對造紙業從來沒有涉獵,事實上在我長達54年的投資生涯中,印象中
從來就沒有持有過紙類股的股票,所以去年八月我們可以做的選擇大概就是將這
筆投資在市場上賣掉或是任由公司贖回,在我們投資Champion的過程中,該
公司經營階層對我們的態度一向坦白自重,而他們也希望將這批股票買回,所以
到最後我們決定順應公司的要求,這項舉動讓我們有19%的稅後資本利得,當
然還要再加上持有六年期間所收到的特別股股息,(附帶一提,許多新聞報導都
過度高估一般產物意外險業者所收到股利收入的稅後報酬率,原因在於媒體記者
忘了將1987年通過的新稅法列入考慮,這項稅法大大減少了保險業者最後可以
得到的利益,相關的細節請參閱1986年的年報)。

Our First Empire preferred will be called on March 31, 1996,

the earliest date allowable. We are comfortable owning stock in

well-run banks, and we will convert and keep our First Empire

common shares. Bob Wilmers, CEO of the company, is an outstanding

banker, and we love being associated with him.

我們在第一帝國銀行的特別股在1996年3月1日進行轉換,這是可以轉換的
最早日期,我們對於能夠繼續持有這家經營良好銀行的股份感到相當安心,該公
司的總裁Bob Wilmers是位相當優秀的銀行家,我們很高興能夠與他一起合
作。

Our other two preferreds have been disappointing, though the

Salomon preferred has modestly outperformed the fixed-income

securities for which it was a substitute. However, the amount of

management time Charlie and I have devoted to this holding has been

vastly greater than its economic significance to Berkshire.

Certainly I never dreamed I would take a new job at age 60 -

Salomon interim chairman, that is - because of an earlier purchase

of a fixed-income security.

另外兩個特別股投資個案的結果就讓人相當失望,雖然所羅門特別股最後的投資
報酬率仍高於其替代的固定收益證券投資,不過若考量查理跟我本人在這項投資
上所花費的心思,其所得與付出實在是不成正比,當然我根本就沒有料到到了
60歲的這把年紀,會因為一筆固定收益證券的投資,還能夠接下這項擔任所羅
門臨時董事會主席的新工作。

Soon after our purchase of the Salomon preferred in 1987, I

wrote that I had "no special insights regarding the direction or

future profitability of investment banking." Even the most

charitable commentator would conclude that I have since proved my

point.

1987年就在我們剛剛買下所羅門特別股不久之後,我就曾經說過我們對於投資
銀行業的發展前景與獲利能力並沒有特殊的見地,我想事後看來就算是最好心的
評論家,也會覺得我當時說的那段話很有道理。

To date, our option to convert into Salomon common has not

proven of value. Furthermore, the Dow Industrials have doubled

since I committed to buy the preferred, and the brokerage group has

performed equally as well. That means my decision to go with

Salomon because I saw value in the conversion option must be graded

as very poor. Even so, the preferred has continued under some

trying conditions to deliver as a fixed-income security, and the

9% dividend is currently quite attractive.

到目前為止,我們擁有將這筆投資轉換為所羅門普通股的權利,其價值尚未浮
現,另外自從買進這筆投資後,道瓊指數已經漲了一倍,而券商的表現也相當不
錯,這代表我因為判斷轉換權利相當有價值而決定繼續與所羅門交往的決策品質
相當的差,不過即便如此,這筆特別股投資還是相當勉力地繼續當作我們的固定
收益證券投資,畢竟每年9%的股息收入還是相當誘人的。

Unless the preferred is converted, its terms require

redemption of 20% of the issue on October 31 of each year, 1995-99,

and $140 million of our original $700 million was taken on schedule

last year. (Some press reports labeled this a sale, but a senior

security that matures is not "sold.") Though we did not elect to

convert the preferred that matured last year, we have four more

bites at the conversion apple, and I believe it quite likely that

we will yet find value in our right to convert.

除非我們選擇轉換,否則這項投資有一條款約定從1995年10月31日開始的
五年,該公司每年都可贖回20%的投資,所以去年我們總計7億的投資中,1.4
億已按計畫由公司贖回,(有些新聞報導將這筆交易稱呼為出售,事實上債券到
期後應該稱之為"贖回"),雖然去年我們放棄轉換選擇而被贖回,不過我們還有四
次機會,而我也相信未來我們應該很有可能在這些轉換的權利中找到一些價值存
在。

I discussed the USAir investment at length in last year's

report. The company's results improved in 1995, but it still faces

significant problems. On the plus side for us is the fact that our

preferred is structurally well-designed: For example, though we

have not been paid dividends since June 1994, the amounts owed us

are compounding at 5% over the prime rate. On the minus side is

the fact that we are dealing with a weak credit.

去年我花了相當大的篇幅討論美國航空,這家公司今年的表現略微好轉,不過還
是著面臨許多的問題,幸運的是我們的特別股投資條款當初訂的對我們較有利,
比如說,雖然從1994年起本來應該付給我們的特別股股息就已跳票,但是欠我
們的股息每年還是必須以5%的基放利率加計利息,不過不幸的是跟我們打交道
的是一家債信不良的公司。

We feel much better about our USAir preferred than we did a

year ago, but your guess is as good as mine as to its ultimate

value. (Indeed, considering my record with this investment, it's

fair to say that your guess may be better than mine.) At yearend

we carried our preferred (in which there is no public market) at

60% of par, though USAir also has outstanding a junior preferred

that is significantly inferior to ours in all respects except

conversion price and that was then trading at 82% of par. As I

write this, the junior issue has advanced to 97% of par. Let's

hope the market is right.

關於美國航空特別股的情況,比起一年前,我們現在樂觀許多,不過這家公司最
後到底會變成怎樣,我跟各位一樣還是沒有任何頭緒,(事實上,觀諸過去本人
在這項投資上的經驗,或許各位的看法要比起我個人來得具參考價值),截至去
年底,我們帳列的特別股投資金額是票面金額的60%(此特別股並沒有公開明確
的市價),雖然在此同時,美國航空還有另一項發行在外,除了轉換價格之外,
其餘的條件包含抵押順位都不如我們的特別股,係以票面金額的82%左右的價
位進行交易,而就在我寫這份年報的同時,其交易的價格已上漲為票面金額的
97%,衷心期盼市場的看法是對的。

Overall, our preferreds have performed well, but that is true

only because of one huge winner, Gillette. Leaving aside Gillette,

our preferreds as a group have delivered us after-tax returns no

more than equal to those we could have earned from the medium-term

fixed-income issues that they replaced.

總的來說,我們的特別股投資績效算是相當不錯的了,不過主要的原因還在於壓
對了吉列特別股這個寶,若扣除吉列不記,我們其他的特別股投資帶給我們的稅
後盈餘,大概僅與原先他們所取代的中期固定收益債券的投資報酬率差不了多
少。

A Proposed Recapitalization

股權重組提案

At the Annual Meeting you will be asked to approve a

recapitalization of Berkshire, creating two classes of stock. If

the plan is adopted, our existing common stock will be designated

as Class A Common Stock and a new Class B Common Stock will be

authorized.

今年的股東會將會有一項股權重組提案需要各位進行投票表決,一旦獲得通過,
Berkshire原來發行的股份,將會被分拆為兩種普通股,一種為A級普通股,一
種為B級普通股。

Each share of the "B" will have the rights of 1/30th of an "A"

share with these exceptions: First, a B share will have 1/200th of

the vote of an A share (rather than 1/30th of the vote). Second,

the B will not be eligible to participate in Berkshire's

shareholder-designated charitable contributions program.

B級普通股擁有A級普通股三十分之一的權利,除了以下兩點,第一,B級普通
股的投票權只有A級普通股的二百分之一(而不是三十分之一),第二,B級普通
股不能參加Berkshire股東指定捐贈計畫。

When the recapitalization is complete, each share of A will

become convertible, at the holder's option and at any time, into 30

shares of B. This conversion privilege will not extend in the

opposite direction. That is, holders of B shares will not be able

to convert them into A shares.

當股權重組完成之後,每一股A級普通股可以依持有人的自由意志在任何時候,
選擇轉換成30股的B級普通股,但反之則不行,也就是說30股的B級普通股
不能要求轉換成一股的A級普通股。

We expect to list the B shares on the New York Stock Exchange,

where they will trade alongside the A stock. To create the

shareholder base necessary for a listing - and to ensure a liquid

market in the B stock - Berkshire expects to make a public offering

for cash of at least $100 million of new B shares. The offering

will be made only by means of a prospectus.

跟A級普通股一樣,B級普通股也將在紐約證券交易所中掛牌交易,而為了維持
掛牌之後的流通性,Berkshire預計將會發行總金額1億美元以上的B級普通
股,整個釋股的過程將以透過公開說明書的方式進行。

The market will ultimately determine the price of the B

shares. Their price, though, should be in the neighborhood of

1/30th of the price of the A shares.

市場最終將會決定B級普通股的合理價格,當然若無特殊情況,B級普通股將會
以A級普通股三十分之一左右的價位進行交易。

Class A shareholders who wish to give gifts may find it

convenient to convert a share or two of their stock into Class B

shares. Additionally, arbitrage-related conversions will occur if

demand for the B is strong enough to push its price to slightly

above 1/30th of the price of A.

持有A級普通股的股東若有贈與的計畫,將可以很輕易地先將持有的股份轉為B
級普通股,當然可能也會有一些轉換套利方面的交易可能使得B級普通股股價略
高於A級普通股股價的三十分之一。

However, because the Class A stock will entitle its holders to

full voting rights and access to Berkshire's contributions program,

these shares will be superior to the Class B shares and we would

expect most shareholders to remain holders of the Class A - which

is precisely what the Buffett and Munger families plan to do,

except in those instances when we ourselves might convert a few

shares to facilitate gifts. The prospect that most shareholders

will stick to the A stock suggests that it will enjoy a somewhat

more liquid market than the B.

然而,由於A級普通股還是享有完整的投票權以及參與Berkshire股東指定捐
贈計畫的權利,所以就這方面而言,A級普通股還是比B級普通股來得好,所以
我們預期大部分的股東,就像巴菲特與曼格家族一樣,還是會選擇繼續持有A
級普通股,除非有股東有贈與的考量時,可能會將少部份的股份進行轉換,而由
於我們預期大部分會選擇維持不變,所以A級普通股的流通性應該會比B級普
通股來得高。

There are tradeoffs for Berkshire in this recapitalization.

But they do not arise from the proceeds of the offering - we will

find constructive uses for the money - nor in any degree from the

price at which we will sell the B shares. As I write this - with

Berkshire stock at $36,000 - Charlie and I do not believe it

undervalued. Therefore, the offering we propose will not diminish

the per-share intrinsic value of our existing stock. Let me also

put our thoughts about valuation more baldly: Berkshire is selling

at a price at which Charlie and I would not consider buying it.

這次的股權重組對Berkshire來說有利有弊,原因不在於發行新股所帶來的資
金,我們一定可以找到合理的用途,也不在於發行新股的價格,就在我撰寫年報
的時刻,Berkshire的股價約為每股36,000美元,查理跟我本人都不認為這樣
的價位過於低估,因此此次發行新股並不會使得公司原本的每股實質價值受到損
害,講的再白一點,以現在的價位而言,查理跟我都不會考慮再加碼買進
Berkshire的股份。

What Berkshire will incur by way of the B stock are certain

added costs, including those involving the mechanics of handling a

larger number of shareholders. On the other hand, the stock should

be a convenience for people wishing to make gifts. And those of

you who have hoped for a split have gained a do-it-yourself method

of bringing one about.

當然因為B級普通股的發行,Berkshire公司本身必須承擔處理更多股東所帶來
的股務作業,不過對於那些有贈與計畫的股東來說,卻變得方便許多,而對於喜
歡股票分割的投資人來說,也多了一個自助式分割的管道。

We are making this move, though, for other reasons - having to

do with the appearance of expense-laden unit trusts purporting to

be low-priced "clones" of Berkshire and sure to be aggressively

marketed. The idea behind these vehicles is not new: In recent

years, a number of people have told me about their wish to create

an "all-Berkshire" investment fund to be sold at a low dollar

price. But until recently, the promoters of these investments

heard out my objections and backed off.

當然,之所以會有這樣的舉動還有其他理由,主要是由於目前坊間出現一種模仿
Berkshire的信託基金,號稱價位低,只要收取部份費用,人人都投資得起,這
樣的主意並不是首次出現,近幾年來,有一些人向我傳達想要設立一種所謂的仿
Berkshire投資基金,以較低的價位對外發行,不過由於我個人並不贊同這樣的
做法,所以這些人才沒有進一步的舉動。

I did not discourage these people because I prefer large

investors over small. Were it possible, Charlie and I would love

to turn $1,000 into $3,000 for multitudes of people who would find

that gain an important answer to their immediate problems.

對於這些人我不會一昧地打壓,因為畢竟我們的目標鎖定在大額投資人,如果可
能,查理跟我當然希望公司的淨值可以直接由1,000美元翻個兩、三翻立刻變
成3,000美元,如此一來大家因為這樣的資本利得肯定不會再有其他的意見。

In order to quickly triple small stakes, however, we would

have to just as quickly turn our present market capitalization of

$43 billion into $129 billion (roughly the market cap of General

Electric, America's most highly valued company). We can't come

close to doing that. The very best we hope for is - on average - to

double Berkshire's per-share intrinsic value every five years, and

we may well fall far short of that goal.

為了將這些小籌碼成長三倍,我們可能必須讓Berkshire的市值從原本的430
億美元,一下子暴增為1,290億美元(這相當於通用電氣-目前股票市場上市值
最高的公司),這根本就不可能辦得到,所以我們比較希望的是,平均而言,
Berkshire的每股價值每五年能夠翻一番,當然要達到這樣的目標並不容易。

In the end, Charlie and I do not care whether our shareholders

own Berkshire in large or small amounts. What we wish for are

shareholders of any size who are knowledgeable about our

operations, share our objectives and long-term perspective, and are

aware of our limitations, most particularly those imposed by our

large capital base.

總而言之,查理跟我不太在乎我們的股東們擁有公司股份的多寡,我們衷心期盼
的是不論是大、小股東,都能了解我們的營運模式、與我們擁有共同的目標與長
期投資理念,同時也能夠明暸我們受到的限制,尤其是股本過大本身加諸予我們
的負荷。

The unit trusts that have recently surfaced fly in the face of

these goals. They would be sold by brokers working for big

commissions, would impose other burdensome costs on their

shareholders, and would be marketed en masse to unsophisticated

buyers, apt to be seduced by our past record and beguiled by the

publicity Berkshire and I have received in recent years. The sure

outcome: a multitude of investors destined to be disappointed.

這些基金最近紛紛以這樣的號召浮上台面,通常它們都是透過經紀人以高額佣金
銷售,所以加入的投資人必須背負相當沈重的成本,而一些不知情的投資人,可
能衝著Berkshire過去的成績以及查理與我本人近年來的高知名度而受騙上
當,最後的結果肯定是︰投資大眾註定會大失所望。

Through our creation of the B stock - a low-denomination

product far superior to Berkshire-only trusts - we hope to make the

clones unmerchandisable.

所以透過B級普通股的誕生-一種低面額但遠優於仿Berkshire基金的產物,我
們希望可以讓那些模仿的假貨無法在市場上生存。

But both present and prospective Berkshire shareholders should

pay special attention to one point: Though the per-share intrinsic

value of our stock has grown at an excellent rate during the past

five years, its market price has grown still faster. The stock, in

other words, has outperformed the business.

不過我們還是必須再次提醒Berkshire現有以及未來可能的股東,雖然在過去五
年間本公司的實質價值以相當快速的速度成長,不過公司本身的股價漲升速度卻
有過之而無不及,換句話說,在這期間股票的市價表現遠過於公司本業的表現。

That kind of market overperformance cannot persist indefinitely,

neither for Berkshire nor any other stock. Inevitably, there

will be periods of underperformance as well. The price

volatility that results, though endemic to public markets, is

not to our liking. What we would prefer instead is to have the

market price of Berkshire precisely track its intrinsic value.

Were the stock to do that, every shareholder would benefit during

his period of ownership in exact proportion to the progress

Berkshire itself made in the period.

這樣的情況不太可能無止盡的持續下去,不管是Berkshire或是其他股票都一
樣,無可避免的,總有一天股價的表現會遜於本業的表現,我們不太願意見到公
司的股價受到股票市場影響而劇烈波動,我們比較喜歡的模式是Berkshire的股
價能夠與其所代表的實質價值一致,如此一來我們就可以確保每位股東在持有本
公司股份的期間所獲得的報酬皆能與Berkshire本身事業的發展狀況一致。

Obviously, the market behavior of Berkshire's stock will never

conform to this ideal. But we will come closer to this goal than

we would otherwise if our present and prospective shareholders are

informed, business-oriented and not exposed to high-commission

salesmanship when making their investment decisions. To that end,

we are better off if we can blunt the merchandising efforts of the

unit trusts - and that is the reason we are creating the B stock.

很顯然的Berkshire的股價不可能以這樣理想的方式演變,不過若是我們能夠確
定現有與未來的股東在做投資決策時,能得到充分的資訊、以公司發展為導向且
不會受到高佣金的營業員所引誘,我們就越有可能達到這樣的目標,基於這樣的
前提,我們必須降低那些想要推銷仿Berkshire基金的動機,這也是我們決定推
出B級普通股的主要原因。

We look forward to answering your questions about the

recapitalization at the Annual Meeting.

當然若大家對於本次股權重組還有任何問題,歡迎在股東年會上提出討論。

Miscellaneous

其他事項

Berkshire isn't the only American corporation utilizing the

new, exciting ABWA strategy. At about 1:15 p.m. on July 14, 1995,

Michael Eisner, CEO of The Walt Disney Company, was walking up

Wildflower Lane in Sun Valley. At the same time, I was leaving a

lunch at Herbert Allen's home on that street to meet Tom Murphy,

CEO of Cap Cities/ABC, for a golf game.

Berkshire並不是第一家採用新穎有趣的ABWA走動式併購策略的美國企業,
1995年7月14日下午1點15分,當時華德迪士尼的總裁Michael Eisner
正在Sun Valley的野花大道上行走,在此同時,我剛好從同一條街上Herber
Allen家中一場午宴離開,趕赴與資本城/ABC總裁Tom Murphy的一場高爾夫
球會。

That morning, speaking to a large group of executives and

money managers assembled by Allen's investment bank, Michael had

made a brilliant presentation about Disney, and upon seeing him, I

offered my congratulations. We chatted briefly - and the subject

of a possible combination of Disney and Cap Cities came up. This

wasn't the first time a merger had been discussed, but progress had

never before been made, in part because Disney wanted to buy with

cash and Cap Cities desired stock.

就在當天早上,面對由Allen的投資銀行召集一大群企業總裁與基金經理人,
Michael做了一場有關迪士尼相當精彩的演講,會後在街上遇到他,於是我上前
向他致意,我們做了短暫的交談,聊到迪士尼與資本城進行合併的可能性,這並
不是第一次討論有關合併的可能,先前之所以一直沒有進展,一部份的原因是由
於迪士尼希望用現金進行交易,而資本城想要拿股票。

Michael and I waited a few minutes for Murph to arrive, and in

the short conversation that ensued, both Michael and Murph

indicated they might bend on the stock/cash question. Within a few

weeks, they both did, at which point a contract was put together in

three very busy days.

Michael跟我花了幾分鐘等候Murph的到來,在接下來短暫的會談後,雙方同
意在現金/股票的問題上互做讓步,幾個星期後,雙方達成協議,而經過連續三
天馬不停蹄的談判後,終於擬訂了合併契約。

The Disney/Cap Cities deal makes so much sense that I'm sure

it would have occurred without that chance encounter in Sun Valley.

But when I ran into Michael that day on Wildflower Lane, he was

heading for his plane, so without that accidental meeting the deal

certainly wouldn't have happened in the time frame it did. I

believe both Disney and Cap Cities will benefit from the fact that

we all serendipitously met that day.

我認為迪士尼與資本城的合併案是天造地設的一對,即使沒有那天在Sun Valley
的巧遇,雙方終究還是會結合,不過要不是那天剛好我在野花大道碰到正要趕飛
機的Michael,整個合併案可能不會那麼快地順利完成,不可諱言的,迪士尼與
資本城都將因為我們那天的巧遇而受惠良多。

* * * * * * * * * * * *

It's appropriate that I say a few words here about Murph. To

put it simply, he is as fine an executive as I have ever seen in my

long exposure to business. Equally important, he possesses human

qualities every bit the equal of his managerial qualities. He's an

extraordinary friend, parent, husband and citizen. In those rare

instances in which Murph's personal interests diverged from those

of shareholders, he unfailingly favored the owners. When I say

that I like to be associated with managers whom I would love to

have as a sibling, in-law, or trustee of my will, Murph is the

exemplar of what I mean.

在這裡我特別要提一下Murph,簡單的說,他是我在投資生涯中,遇到最好的
經理人之一,同時除了優秀的管理特質之外,他也擁有同等的人格特質,他是一
位傑出的朋友、父親、丈夫與公民,許多時候當其個人利益與股東利益相衝突時,
他毫不猶豫地會選擇後者,每當我提到我喜歡與那種我希望他們能夠成為我的子
孫、女婿或遺囑執行人的經理人共事時,Murph就是我所能引用的最佳典範。

If Murph should elect to run another business, don't bother to

study its value - just buy the stock. And don't later be as dumb

as I was two years ago when I sold one-third of our holdings in Cap

Cities for $635 million (versus the $1.27 billion those shares

would bring in the Disney merger).

如果Murph決定另創事業,不必費心去研究其可行性,閉著眼睛投資就對了,
而且絕對不要笨到像我前年一樣把資本城三分之一的持股以6.35億美元賣掉,
這批股票在與迪士尼合併後,價值超過12.7億美元。

* * * * * * * * * * * *

About 96.3% of all eligible shares participated in Berkshire's

1995 shareholder-designated contributions program. Contributions

made were $11.6 million and 3,600 charities were recipients. A

full description of the shareholder-designated contributions

program appears on pages 54-55.

大約有96.3%的有效股權參與1995年的股東指定捐贈計劃,總計約1,160萬
美元捐出的款項分配給3,600家慈善機構,詳細的名單參閱附錄。

Every year a few shareholders miss out on the program because

they don't have their shares registered in their own names on the

prescribed record date or because they fail to get their

designation form back to us within the 60-day period allowed. That

second problem pained me especially this year because two good

friends with substantial holdings missed the deadline. We had to

deny their requests to be included because we can't make exceptions

for some shareholders while refusing to make them for others.

每年都有一小部份的股東由於沒有將股份登記在本人的名下,或是沒能在60天
的期限內,將指定捐贈的表格送回給我們,而沒辦法參加我們的指定捐贈計畫,
尤其是第二個原因讓我感到特別頭痛,因為今年有二位Berkshire大股東同時也
是我個人的好朋友,未能在截止日以前將表格送達,我們必須忍痛將他們的指定
捐贈剔除,因為我們不可能在拒絕其他不符合規定股東的同時,還破例讓他們參
與。

To participate in future programs, you must own Class A shares

that are registered in the name of the actual owner, not the

nominee name of a broker, bank or depository. Shares not so

registered on August 31, 1996, will be ineligible for the 1996

program. When you get the form, return it promptly so that it does

not get put aside or forgotten.

想要參加這項計畫者,請必須擁有A級普通股,同時確定您的股份是登記在自
己而非股票經紀人或保管銀行的名下,同時必須在1996年8月31日之前完成
登記,才有權利參與1996年的捐贈計畫,當你收到表格後,請立即填寫後寄回,
以免被丟在一旁給忘記了。

* * * * * * * * * * * *

When it comes to our Annual Meetings, Charlie and I are

managerial oddballs: We thoroughly enjoy the event. So come join

us on Monday, May 6. At Berkshire, we have no investor relations

department and don't use financial analysts as a channel for

disseminating information, earnings "guidance," or the like.

Instead, we prefer direct manager-to-owner communication and

believe that the Annual Meeting is the ideal place for this

interchange of ideas. Talking to you there is efficient for us and

also democratic in that all present simultaneously hear what we

have to say.

每次提到年度股東會,查理跟我就變成囉唆的老頭,我們實在是很喜歡這場盛
會,所以請大家務必在五月六日星期一大駕光臨,在Berkshire我們沒有投資人
公關部門,也從不依賴股票分析師當作資訊溝通的橋樑,盈餘的預估解說等等,
相反地,我們比較喜歡股東與經理人直接面對面的溝通,而且相信年度股東會正
是觀念溝通的最佳場所,與各位一談對我們來說一點也不會浪費時間,同時也讓
各位以相當民主的方式聽到我們想要跟各位傳達的理念。

Last year, for the first time, we had the Annual Meeting at

the Holiday Convention Centre and the logistics seemed to work.

The ballroom there was filled with about 3,200 people, and we had a

video feed into a second room holding another 800 people. Seating

in the main room was a little tight, so this year we will probably

configure it to hold 3,000. This year we will also have two rooms

for the overflow.

去年我們首度在Holiday會議中心召開年度股東會,當初預定的準備動作事後
看起來相當正確,中央大廳坐滿了3,200個人,同時藉由視聽器材的輔助,旁
邊的會議室還有800人得以參與,大廳顯得有點擁擠,所以今年我們打算只排
3,000個座位,同時另外會再準備二間會議室以容納更多的人參與。

All in all, we will be able to handle 5,000 shareholders. The

meeting will start at 9:30 a.m., but be warned that last year the

main ballroom was filled shortly after 8:00 a.m.

會場總共可以容納5,000人,會議預定在9點30分開始,不過大家可能要早
一點到,因為去年中央大廳在8點過後不久便已座無虛席。

Shareholders from 49 states attended our 1995 meeting - where

were you, Vermont? - and a number of foreign countries, including

Australia, Sweden and Germany, were represented. As always, the

meeting attracted shareholders who were interested in Berkshire's

business - as contrasted to shareholders who are primarily

interested in themselves - and the questions were all good.

Charlie and I ate lunch on stage and answered questions for about

five hours.

來自49個州的股東參與1995年的年度股東會,你從哪裡來,是佛蒙特州嗎? 另
外還有一些股東來自海外地區,包含澳洲、瑞典與德國等國家,一如往常,年會
吸引了許多真正關心公司發展的股東參加,與其他只關心自己利益別的公司的股
東相較有很大的不同,所提出的問題也相當好,查理跟我花了五個多小時回答問
題,連午餐都直接在台上解決。

We feel that if owners come from all over the world, we should

try to make sure they have an opportunity to ask their questions.

Most shareholders leave about noon, but a thousand or so hardcore

types usually stay to see whether we will drop. Charlie and I are

in training to last at least five hours again this year.

因為我們認為股東們從世界各地遠道而來,所以總是希望讓他們都有機會可以發
問,大部分的股東在中午過後就紛紛離席,但還是有一千多名比較死忠的股東想
要瞧瞧我們到底能夠撐多久,今年查理跟我希望盡量努力能夠像去年那樣至少撐
五個小時以上。

We will have our usual array of Berkshire products at the

meeting and this year will add a sales representative from GEICO.

At the 1995 meeting, we sold 747 pounds of candy, 759 pairs of

shoes, and over $17,500 of World Books and related publications.

In a move that might have been dangerous had our stock been weak,

we added knives last year from our Quikut subsidiary and sold 400

sets of these. (We draw the line at soft fruit, however.) All of

these goods will again be available this year. We don't consider a

cultural event complete unless a little business is mixed in.

依照慣例,我們在會場上展示了一些Berkshire的產品,今天將會新增一位
GEICO保險公司的業務代表,去年股東會總計賣出了747磅的糖果、759雙的
鞋子以及價值超過17,500美元的世界百科全書與相關出版品,另外我們臨時還
增加了旗下子公司Quikut所生產的小刀,總計賣出400把(幸好去年公司股價
表現不錯,否則這可能是相當危險的一項舉動),今年這些商品將再度與會,我
覺得這項盛會總要帶點商業氣息才算完整圓滿。

Because we expect a large crowd for the meeting, we recommend

that you promptly get both plane and hotel reservations. Those of

you who like to be downtown (about six miles from the Centre) may

wish to stay at the Radisson Redick Tower, a small (88 rooms) but

nice hotel, or at the much larger Red Lion Hotel a few blocks away.

In the vicinity of the Centre are the Holiday Inn (403 rooms),

Homewood Suites (118 rooms) and Hampton Inn (136 rooms). Another

recommended spot is the Marriott, whose west Omaha location is

about 100 yards from Borsheim's and a ten-minute drive from the

Centre. There will be buses at the Marriott that will leave at

7:30, 8:00 and 8:30 for the meeting and return after it ends.

由於預期會有相當多的人與會,我們建議大家最好先預訂機位與住宿,想要住在
市中心的人(距離會場約6英哩)可以選擇擁有88個房間的一家小旅館-
Radisson-Redick旅館或是旁邊較大一點的Red Lion旅館,至於會場附近則有
Holiday Inn (403個房間)、Homewood Suites (118個房間)或Hampton Inn
(136個房間),另一個推薦的旅館是位在奧瑪哈西區的Marriott,離波仙珠寶店
約100公尺,距離會場約10分鐘的車程,屆時在哪裡將會有巴士分7:30、8:00
跟8:30三班,接送大家往返股東會會場。

An attachment to our proxy material explains how you can

obtain the card you will need for admission to the meeting. A

good-sized parking area is available at the Centre, while those who

stay at the Holiday Inn, Homewood Suites and Hampton Inn will be

able to walk to the meeting. As usual, we will have buses to take

you to the Nebraska Furniture Mart and Borsheim's after the meeting

and to take you from there to hotels or the airport later.

後面附有股東會開會投票的相關資料,跟各位解釋如何拿到入場所許的識別證,
當天會場有相當大的停車場,住在Holiday Inn 、Homewood Suites或
Hampton Inn的人可以直接走路過來開會,一如往年,會後我們備有巴士帶大
家到內布拉斯加傢具店與波仙珠寶店或是到飯店與機場。

NFM's main store, on its 64-acre site about two miles north of

the Centre, is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays, 10 a.m. to

6 p.m. on Saturdays, and noon to 6 p.m. on Sundays. Rose Blumkin -

"Mrs. B" - is now 102, but will be hard at work in Mrs. B's

Warehouse. She was honored in November at the opening of The Rose,

a classic downtown theater of the 20's that has been magnificently

restored, but that would have been demolished had she not saved it.

Ask her to tell you the story.

佔地60英畝的NFM主館距離會場約2英哩遠,營業時間平日從早上10點到
下午9點,星期六從早上10點到下午6點,星期日則從中午開到下午6點,
Rose Blumkin-B太太今年高齡102歲,不過每天還是會到B太太倉庫工作,
去年十一月她應邀到Rose表演中心擔任開幕剪綵嘉賓,原本是20年代老舊的
戲院在B太太大力的支持下得以重新修復,記得問她有關這一段的故事。

Borsheim's normally is closed on Sunday but will be open for

shareholders and their guests from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on May 5th.

Additionally, we will have a special opening for shareholders on

Saturday, the 4th, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Last year, on

Shareholders Day, we wrote 1,733 tickets in the six hours we were

open - which is a sale every 13 seconds. Remember, though, that

records are made to be broken.

平時禮拜天不營業的波仙珠寶,特地在五月五日股東會當天會為股東與來賓開
放,從中午開到下午6點,此外今年在五月四日星期六股東會的前一晚從下午6
點到晚上9點,還將特地為股東開放,去年股東會當天,在短短六個小時的營
業時間內,我們總共收到1,733張訂單,等於每13秒就有一筆生意成交,各位
請記得記錄本來就是用來打破的。

At Borsheim's, we will also have the world's largest faceted

diamond on display. Two years in the cutting, this inconspicuous

bauble is 545 carats in size. Please inspect this stone and let it

guide you in determining what size gem is appropriate for the one

you love.

在波仙珠寶店,將會展出一顆全世界最大的平面鑽石,花費兩年的時間切割,這
顆不甚起眼的玩意兒總共有545克拉重,請大家好好看看這一顆石頭,然後再
決定你應該為你心愛的人買一顆多大的寶石。

On Saturday evening, May 4, there will be a baseball game at

Rosenblatt Stadium between the Omaha Royals and the Louisville

Redbirds. I expect to make the opening pitch - owning a quarter of

the team assures me of one start per year - but our manager, Mike

Jirschele, will probably make his usual mistake and yank me

immediately after. About 1,700 shareholders attended last year's

game. Unfortunately, we had a rain-out, which greatly disappointed

the many scouts in the stands. But the smart ones will be back

this year, and I plan to show them my best stuff.

在前一天5月4日,星期六晚上,Rosenblatt體育館將會有一場奧瑪哈皇家
隊對路易維里紅鳥隊的比賽,我準備在開幕時擔任開球工作,擁有該隊四分之一
的所有權確保我可以每年擔任一次先發,不過一如往常我們的球隊經理-Mike
大概都會做出錯誤的決定,很快地就把我拉下場,去年大約有1,700位股東出
席這項盛會,可惜的是當晚因雨停賽,使得旁邊的球僮失望不已,今年好戲將會
重新上演,而我也準備將拿手絕活展現出來。

Our proxy statement will include information about obtaining

tickets to the game. We will also offer an information packet this

year listing restaurants that will be open on Sunday night and

describing various things that you can do in Omaha on the weekend.

股東會資料將告訴大家如何取得入場的門票,同時我們也會提供星期天晚上會開
張的餐廳資訊,同時列出假日期間在奧瑪哈你可以從事的活動介紹。

For years, I've unsuccessfully tried to get my grade school

classmate, "Pal" Gorat, to open his steakhouse for business on the

Sunday evening preceding the meeting. But this year he's relented.

Gorat's is a family-owned enterprise that has thrived for 52

years, and if you like steaks, you'll love this place. I've told

Pal he will get a good crowd, so call Gorat's at 402-551-3733 for a

reservation. You'll spot me there - I'll be the one eating the

rare T-bone with a double order of hash browns.

多年來我一直無法成功說服我的小學同學-Gorat所開的餐廳在年會當天晚上開
門營業,不過今年他終於屈服,Gorat's是一家有52年歷史的老牌餐廳,如果
你愛吃牛排,包準你會愛上這個地方,我已向Gorat拍胸脯保證一定會有很多
顧客上門,所以記得打電話(402-551-3733)去預訂,我保證大家一定可以在
那裡看到我,通常我會點一大份丁骨牛排加上雙份的肉丸。

Warren E. Buffett

March 1, 1996 Chairman of the Board

華倫.巴菲特

董事會主席

1996年3月1日
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