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Warren Buffett is not a fan of Donald Trump. The Oracle of Omaha made that abundantly clear earlier this month when he ripped into Trump over his war of words with the family of a Muslim American soldier who was killed in active duty.

“How in the world can you stand up to a couple of parents who lost a son and talk about sacrificing because you were building a bunch of buildings?” Buffett said at a Hillary Clinton rally in his hometown of Omaha. “Trump and his family have sacrificed; building buildings is not sacrifice.”[1]

Buffett’s comments got us thinking, how would the Oracle stack up against Trump in terms of wealth, power and financial achievements?


It’s no surprise that Buffett is far wealthier than Donald Trump, who by the way, is no slouch either. According to recent estimates, Trump’s net worth is $4.5 billion. Buffett is worth in excess of $64 billion, placing him No. 2 on the Forbes 400 list.

Financial Achievements

Forbes gave Buffett a self-made score of 8 out of 10, which suggests the vast majority of his success was attributed to his own hard work. Buffett is widely considered to be the most successful value investor of all time. He has made Berkshire Hathaway one of the world’s most valuable companies. With a stock price of over $200,000 a share, the company is certainly the most expensive to own. Berkshire owns companies like Geico, Wells Fargo, Coca-Cola, IBM and several others. Buffett has been more than just a figurehead at the company; he has come to exemplify all of the positive attributes of successful value investing, all while remaining extremely humble.

Forbes gave Donald Trump a self-made score of 5 out of 10, given that his father Fred died with an estimated net worth between $250 and $450 million.[2] Donald became acting president of his father’s company in 1974, where he invested heavily in condos, apartment buildings and government-backed housing – all in the New York area. By the 1980s, Donald established the Trump Organization, which oversaw hundreds of business.

However, Trump Organization would later reveal a deficit of $5 billion. The company received a bailout from more than 70 banks, allowing Trump to take second and third mortgages on most of his properties. 1995 was the beginning of the famous Trump turnaround. That was the year he took Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts, Inc. public. Over the next two decades Trump built a successful brand that included hundreds of businesses, thousands of websites and television shows. While Buffett is certainly regarded as more financially successful than Trump, the Donald has much stronger brand power.[3]


Before the 2016 presidential primaries, Buffett was thought to wield more power than Trump due to his massive wealth and influence. However, times have quickly changed. While Buffett’s support of Hillary Clinton will definitely help shore up support for the Democratic nominee, Donald Trump is also eyeing the presidency. By becoming the Republican nominee, Trump’s power and influence over America has grown manifold. According to recent polls, Trump is actually narrowing the gap against Clinton among voters. The Donald’s power seems to be expanding the closer we get to election day. In this respect, Buffett simply cannot compete.

Donald Trump as president would mark a significant paradigm shift in US politics and could possibly create a more level playing field for non-establishment candidates in the future. One thing is clear: the base of the Republican Party does not want Trump in the White House. Fifty of the most senior Republican national security officials, many of whom served under Bush Jr., have signed a letter declaring Trump a grave security threat to the nation.

Trump “lacks the character, value and experience” to lead the United States and “would put at risk our country’s national security and well-being,” the letter said.

The officials warned that Trump, “would be the most reckless president in American history.”[4]

So while Trump does appear to be wielding more power than Buffett, not everyone believes this is a good thing.

For his part, Mr. Buffett is still extremely powerful and influential. He heads one of America’s biggest companies. Through his various investments, Buffett also has hundreds of thousands of individuals employed under his watch.[5] These facts should not be lost, and will likely push Buffett over Trump should the Donald fail to win the White House in November.

[1] Mike Murphy (August 2, 2016). “Warren Buffett rips into Donald Trump” ‘Have you no sense of decency?’” MarketWatch.

[2] Sean Ross (September 2, 2015). “This Is How Donald Trump Became Rich.” Investopedia.

[3] Sean Ross (September 2, 2015). “This Is How Donald Trump Became Rich.” Investopedia.

[4] David E Sanger and Maggie Haberman (August 8, 2016). “50 G.O.P. Officials Warn Donald Trump Would Put Nation’s Security ‘at Risk’.” The New York Times.

[5] Ryan C. Fuhrmann (May 27, 2011). “Billionaire Showdown: Donald Trump Vs. Warren Buffett.” Investopedia.

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