Buffett on Interest Rates, Yellen, and a Potential Acquisition

Berkshire Hathaway is working on a deal to buy a small Western European business, Warren Buffett told Fox Business Network’s Liz Claman in a wide-ranging interview.

“We’re probably going to buy a small business in Europe but I’d love to buy big ones,” Buffett said, adding only that the business would be in western Europe. He said that the purchase “won’t make a dent” in Berkshire’s $60 billion cash reserve. Buffett likes to keep $20 billion in reserve, so he said he has about $40 billion in excess right now.

Buffett also said it will be very difficult for the Federal Reserve to hike interest rates anytime soon. “I think it’s going to be very tough to raise rates when you’ve got what’s going on around the world,” he said. “It would be very tough for them to raise rates. I don’t think it will be very feasible to do, I think you would have a lot of international repercussions.”

Other topics Buffett covers include mortgage rates, why he’s still holding Moody’s shares, and whether Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen has created bubbles. On that last issue, he said, “No, well the last asset I would want to buy is a 30 year government bond. … I don’t want a 10-day bond. There is a good chance, who knows what the probability is, but that a 30 year bond, you know, with a 2.5 percent coupon — I mean that bond could sell at 60 very easily you know sometime in the not too distant future.”



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