The Daily Buffett

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The Gift of Honesty

August 26th

Honesty is a very expensive gift. Don't expect it from cheap people.

Warren Buffett

Honesty, Buffett suggests, is not merely a virtue but a gift, something precious to be gifted and received. This altruistic dimension elevates honesty to the level of a cherished possession, particularly for the sophisticated investor.

When he refers to 'cheap people', it's not financial frugality he points towards, but a lack of character and moral integrity. These individuals cut corners, they value personal gain over truth, they're unlikely to bestow the costly gift of honesty. Their cheapness resides not in their wallets, but in their spirits.

This wisdom is crucial for the investor - it encourages discernment in business partnerships, looking beyond balance sheets and bottom lines to prioritize moral integrity. Equally, it provides a profound guideline for personal conduct, challenging us to elevate ourselves, to be generous in our honesty, and to resist the temptation of cheapness in our dealings.

So, let honesty be your currency, a generous gift, not a grudging obligation. For in the world of investing, as in life, the richest rewards often come from the costliest gifts.

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