Warren Buffett

24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

He was picking out stocks at 11 years old and had amassed the equivalent of $53,000 in today's dollars by the time he was 16.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune
Image credit: J. Kempin | Getty Images
Associate Editor
4 min read
This story originally appeared on Business Insider

With a net worth of over $70 billion, Warren Buffett is the second-richest person in the world, behind only his good friend Bill Gates.

But to those who knew him from the beginning, Buffett's success comes as no surprise: He was picking out stocks at 11 years old and had amassed the equivalent of $53,000 in today's dollars by the time he was 16

Inspired by a Quora thread asking "What are some mind-blowing facts about Warren Buffett," we rounded up 24 astonishing facts about the "Oracle from Omaha" and his massive amount of wealth. 

24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

While his elementary school classmates were dreaming about the major leagues and Hollywood, 10-year old Buffett was having lunch with a member of the New York Stock Exchange and setting life goals.

While his elementary school classmates were dreaming about the major leagues and Hollywood, 10-year old Buffett was having lunch with a member of the New York Stock Exchange and setting life goals.
Image credit: Rick Wilking | Reuters

Buffett's legendary career all began with an epiphany at age 10 when he was on a trip to New York City with his dad.

Dining with a member of the NYSE planted the idea in young Buffett's head to organize his life around money.

24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

He bought his first stock at age 11.

He bought his first stock at age 11.
Image credit: Airbnb
He purchased multiple shares of Cities Service Preferred for $38 apiece.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

When Buffett was a teen, he was already raking in about $175 a month -- more than his teachers (and most adults).

When Buffett was a teen, he was already raking in about $175 a month -- more than his teachers (and most adults).
Image credit: AP
He pulled this off by dutifully delivering the Washington Post.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

He had amassed the equivalent of $53,000 by the time he was just 16.

He had amassed the equivalent of $53,000 by the time he was just 16.
Image credit: AP
Paper delivery was just one of many small businesses teenage Buffett orchestrated: He sold used golf balls and stamps, buffed cars, set up a pinball machine business and turned a horse track into a lucrative playground. 
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

He was rejected from Harvard Business School.

Buffett, confident he nailed his admissions interview, had already told a friend, "Join me at Harvard." 

"I looked about 16 and emotionally was about nine," he recalled of the in-person interview. Forced to look elsewhere, he settled on Columbia University, which only required a written application and no interview.

24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

His idol refused to hire him the first time he applied.

His idol refused to hire him the first time he applied.
Image credit: AP

Buffett originally wanted to work with his idol, and author of The Intelligent Investor, Benjamin Graham, but Graham rejected him because he wasn't Jewish (Graham was saving a spot at his firm for someone Jewish, since at the time Jewish people had a tougher time landing work on Wall Street).

Buffett wouldn't take no for an answer, and continued pitching Graham ideas until he eventually hired him.

24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

Buffett spent $100 to take a Dale Carnegie course on public speaking.

Buffett spent $100 to take a Dale Carnegie course on public speaking.
Image credit: Brendan Hoffman | Getty Images
He was 21 and terrified of public speaking. It ended up being a worthy investment, as the course helped him propose to his wife.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

His house is a humble five-bedroom in Omaha, Nebraska, that he bought in 1956 for $31,500.

His house is a humble five-bedroom in Omaha, Nebraska, that he bought in 1956 for $31,500.
Image credit: Shutterstock
If you want to be Buffett's neighbor, the house across the street will cost you about $2.15 million.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

Buffett doesn't keep a computer on his desk, and he chooses to use a flip phone rather than a smartphone.

Buffett doesn't keep a computer on his desk, and he chooses to use a flip phone rather than a smartphone.
Image credit: CBS News
The most high-tech gadget you'll find in his office is a land line. There is, however, a World Book Encyclopedia set on his shelf.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

In fact, he's only sent one email in his life, to Jeff Raikes of Microsoft.

In fact, he's only sent one email in his life, to Jeff Raikes of Microsoft.
Image credit: Scott Olson | Getty Images
Buffett has successfully evaded technology over the years.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

His distance from technology leaves him time for bridge, which he plays about 12 hours a week.

His distance from technology leaves him time for bridge, which he plays about 12 hours a week.
Image credit: Reuters
Oftentimes, his bridge partner is Bill Gates.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

He spends 80 percent of his day reading.

He spends 80 percent of his day reading.
Image credit: AP
When he's not playing bridge, he's reading. "I just sit in my office and read all day," he says.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

He drinks an alarming amount of Coca-Cola each day.

He drinks an alarming amount of Coca-Cola each day.
Image credit: AP

The business magnate is a notoriously unhealthy eater: "If I eat 2,700 calories a day, a quarter of that is Coca-Cola. I drink at least five 12-ounce servings. I do it everyday."

He also likes to double-fist salt shakers, and don't put it past him to enjoy a bowl of ice cream for breakfast.

24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

99 percent of Buffett's wealth was earned after his 50th birthday.

99 percent of Buffett's wealth was earned after his 50th birthday.
Image credit: AP
And he doesn't appear to be slowing down anytime soon.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

Among investing legends, Buffett has the longest track record for beating the market.

Among investing legends, Buffett has the longest track record for beating the market.
Image credit: Nati Harnik | AP
The longevity of Buffett's outperformance is greater than that of other savvy investors, such as David Einhorn and Walter Schloss.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

$1,000 invested in Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway stock in 1964, when Buffett took over the company and shares cost just $19, would be worth about $13 million dollars today.

$1,000 invested in Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway stock in 1964, when Buffett took over the company and shares cost just $19, would be worth about $13 million dollars today.
Image credit: Truth Leem | Reuters
Buffett took the failing textile company and turned it into a legendary conglomerate.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

Buffett's net worth is greater than the GDP of Uruguay.

Buffett's net worth is greater than the GDP of Uruguay.
Image credit: Alessandro Bianchi | Reuters
Uruguay's 2014 GDP was estimated to be $57,471,277,325
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

Though Buffett spends frugally, he gives generously. In 2010, he teamed up with Bill and Melinda Gates to form The Giving Pledge, an initiative that asks the world's wealthiest people to dedicate the majority of their wealth to philanthropy.

Though Buffett spends frugally, he gives generously. In 2010, he teamed up with Bill and Melinda Gates to form The Giving Pledge, an initiative that asks the world's wealthiest people to dedicate the majority of their wealth to philanthropy.
Image credit: Kevork Djansezian | Getty Images
As of June 2016, more than 154 affluent individuals have signed the pledge, including Michael Bloomberg, Mark Zuckerberg, and Larry Ellison.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

Buffett has also so far donated nearly enough money in his lifetime to build six Apple 'Spaceship' Campuses, which are $5 billion endeavors.

Buffett has also so far donated nearly enough money in his lifetime to build six Apple 'Spaceship' Campuses, which are $5 billion endeavors.
Image credit: Reuters

The Apple Campus, one of the last major projects Steve Jobs worked on, is futuristic-looking company campus that will feature curved glass panels, an underground parking lot, a private auditorium for keynotes and product launches and a 360-degree view of nature. 

Buffett has donated nearly $30 billion -- the second-highest amount (following that of Bill Gates).

24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

In 2013, Buffett made on average $37 million per day -- that's more than what Jennifer Lawrence made the entire year.

In 2013, Buffett made on average $37 million per day -- that's more than what Jennifer Lawrence made the entire year.
Image credit: Lucas Jackson | Reuters

According to Forbes, Jennifer Lawrence was the second-highest-paid actress in 2013, and she is estimated to have made $34 million that year.

Warren Buffett made $37 million per day in 2013.

24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

In July 2016, Buffett broke his own giving record when he donated $2.9 billion to various charities, including The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, which is named for his late wife.

In July 2016, Buffett broke his own giving record when he donated $2.9 billion to various charities, including The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, which is named for his late wife.
Image credit: Chip Somodevilla | Getty Images
Every year, Buffett donates billions to charity.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

The multi-billionaire reportedly earns only $100,000 a year at Berkshire Hathaway -- and spends it frugally.

The multi-billionaire reportedly earns only $100,000 a year at Berkshire Hathaway -- and spends it frugally.
Image credit: Rick Wilking | Reuters
The Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting.
24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

People are so fascinated with the legendary Buffett that they'll spend millions of dollars to eat lunch with him.

Buffett has been auctioning off a "power lunch" since 2000 at his charity event for GLIDE Foundation.

The highest bidder gets to bring up to seven people to dine with the steak-loving business magnate at Smith & Wollensky steakhouse in Manhattan, and the most recent winner paid $3,456,789.

24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune

He doesn't think money equals success: 'I measure success by how many people love me. And the best way to be loved is to be lovable.'

He doesn't think money equals success: 'I measure success by how many people love me. And the best way to be loved is to be lovable.'
Image credit: AP
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  • 24 Mind-Blowing Facts About Warren Buffett and His $70 Billion Fortune
  • While his elementary school classmates were dreaming about the major leagues and Hollywood, 10-year old Buffett was having lunch with a member of the New York Stock Exchange and setting life goals.
  • He bought his first stock at age 11.
  • When Buffett was a teen, he was already raking in about $175 a month -- more than his teachers (and most adults).
  • He had amassed the equivalent of $53,000 by the time he was just 16.
  • He was rejected from Harvard Business School.
  • His idol refused to hire him the first time he applied.
  • Buffett spent $100 to take a Dale Carnegie course on public speaking.
  • His house is a humble five-bedroom in Omaha, Nebraska, that he bought in 1956 for $31,500.
  • Buffett doesn't keep a computer on his desk, and he chooses to use a flip phone rather than a smartphone.
  • In fact, he's only sent one email in his life, to Jeff Raikes of Microsoft.
  • His distance from technology leaves him time for bridge, which he plays about 12 hours a week.
  • He spends 80 percent of his day reading.
  • He drinks an alarming amount of Coca-Cola each day.
  • 99 percent of Buffett's wealth was earned after his 50th birthday.
  • Among investing legends, Buffett has the longest track record for beating the market.
  • $1,000 invested in Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway stock in 1964, when Buffett took over the company and shares cost just $19, would be worth about $13 million dollars today.
  • Buffett's net worth is greater than the GDP of Uruguay.
  • Though Buffett spends frugally, he gives generously. In 2010, he teamed up with Bill and Melinda Gates to form The Giving Pledge, an initiative that asks the world's wealthiest people to dedicate the majority of their wealth to philanthropy.
  • Buffett has also so far donated nearly enough money in his lifetime to build six Apple 'Spaceship' Campuses, which are $5 billion endeavors.
  • In 2013, Buffett made on average $37 million per day -- that's more than what Jennifer Lawrence made the entire year.
  • In July 2016, Buffett broke his own giving record when he donated $2.9 billion to various charities, including The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, which is named for his late wife.
  • The multi-billionaire reportedly earns only $100,000 a year at Berkshire Hathaway -- and spends it frugally.
  • People are so fascinated with the legendary Buffett that they'll spend millions of dollars to eat lunch with him.
  • He doesn't think money equals success: 'I measure success by how many people love me. And the best way to be loved is to be lovable.'
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