Warren Buffett says people like him are the problem with the U.S. economy.
With a net worth of more than $75 billion, Buffett is currently the second richest man alive,
according to Forbes. As the CEO of investing house Berkshire Hathaway,
he is hallowed as the Oracle of Omaha. But for all his personal success,
Buffett says the issue really is the 1 percent.
Part of the reason some are struggling, says the octogenarian
investor, is that the automation and digitization of the U.S. labor
force is happening faster than employees can be retrained.
"We always see shifts in employment. If you think about it, if you go
back to 1800, it took 80 percent of the labor force to produce enough
food for the country. Now it takes less than 3 percent. Well, the truth
is that market systems move people around," says Buffett.
Buffett made his extreme wealth by investing in the stock market, an
interest that took hold young. Buffett bought his first stock when he
was 11 and has been in the market for 75 years. He recommends others do
"They should just keep buying and buying and buying a
little bit of America as they go along. And 30 or 40 years from now,
they will have a lot of money," he says.
In an effort to
compensate for the wealth inequality that he himself has benefited from,
Buffett and his billionaire buddy Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates
co-founded the Giving Pledge, a voluntary commitment by the richest
people in the world to give away at least half of their wealth. The goal
of the Giving Pledge is not only to help those in need but to encourage
others to do the same.