Whether Combs or fellow-newcomer Ted Weschler played a part in Buffett's buying frenzy remains up for debate. For Berkshire investors, what ultimately matters is whether Buffett's new purchases can help get his company's stock out of its rut. Year to date, BRK.A is down over 5.5%, handedly underperforming the broad S&P-tracking SPDR S&P 500 ETF ( SPY). The mood remained soured this week following the release of the company's shaky quarterly earnings. Despite beating analyst estimates, the company reported a notable decline in third quarter profits. Commentators have attributed this drop to the investor's derivative bets. Long a proponent of the U.S.' economic recovery, Buffett has expressed his bullish views through various mediums including interviews and op-ed articles. However, with his most recent purchases, it is clear that his optimism is more than just rhetorical. Looking ahead, it will be interesting to see if the investor's new bets pay off. On a side note, I would like to encourage my readers to review an article written by Jonathan Buoni, the editor of my newsletters who has entered a new columnist competition. If you like the article,
"The Ultimate Gold Valuation," you can vote for it at the top of the page. Thank you! Written by Don Dion in Williamstown, Mass.