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Paulson said the U.S. will get back all the money it pumped into the nation's banks, and may even made a profit. Buffett agreed.
Warren Buffett: I Have Greater Appreciation of Pres. Bush's Handling of Credit Crisis
Thursday, February 4, 2010
February 4, 2010
Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. was stripped of its last AAA credit rating by Standard & Poor’s after the billionaire investor agreed to buy railroad Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp.
Berkshire, which is taking on debt to fund the $26 billion takeover, was cut one level to AA+ from S&P’s highest grade, the ratings firm said today in a statement. The downgrade comes the same day Berkshire filed to sell $8 billion of notes to fund the Burlington Northern purchase, and concludes a review that S&P announced on Nov. 4, the day after Berkshire disclosed the deal.
“The railroad acquisition will reduce what historically has been extremely strong capital adequacy and liquidity,” S&P said. “Risk tolerances appear to have increased.”
Buffett, 79, has called the railroad takeover an “all-in wager” on the U.S. economy. Berkshire lost its top credit grades at Fitch Ratings in March and at Moody’s Investors Service in April amid a slump in the firm’s manufacturing, retail and travel units. The earlier downgrades were on concern about Buffett’s successor and the firm’s derivative bets.
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