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Buffett chastizes Apple on Jobs health debacle

updated 09:30 am EDT, Thu June 25, 2009

Buffett on Jobs' health

Apple was negligent when it failed to mention Steve Jobs' liver transplant, claims prominent American investor Warren Buffett. Speaking with CNBC, Buffett argues that the surgery was a "material fact" relevant to investors, and hence something the company should have disclosed. "If I have any serious illness, or something coming up of an important nature, an operation or anything like that, I think the thing to do is just tell the American, the Berkshire [Hathaway] shareholders about it," he comments. "I work for 'em. Some people might think I'm important to the company."

"Certainly Steve Jobs is important to Apple. So it's a material fact. Whether he is facing serious surgery or not is a material fact. Whether I'm facing serious surgery is a material fact. Whether [General Electric CEO] Jeff Immelt is, I mean, so I think that's important."

While American companies not strictly obligated to share health information with investors, they are required to publish facts investors may need for informed choices. "If they [Apple] tried to lessen the disclosure and make it misleading by omission, that's just as bad as telling something that flat isn't true," says lawyer Jeffrey Soza, speaking with the Chicago Tribune. Apple has continually attempted to downplay Jobs' recent health problems, describing them only as related to a "hormonal imbalance" in spite of the need for a six-month medical leave.















by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. njfuzzy

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +5

    Personal vs Business

    It sounds like the nondisclosure was legal. Given that it was a personal decision, I think its in very poor taste for Buffet to publicly criticize Jobs for keeping his cancer to himself.

  1. ctt1wbw

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +12

    Huh?

    Getting surgery is not the public's right to know. Does the public have a right to know if Mr. Buffett is sick? Give me a break already with the surgery news. It's getting old and tiresome.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -19

    as an investor

    I think it certainly is a material fact that the CEO of the company - especially one as important as Jobs is to Apple - is seriously ill.

    Being a CEO means you give up certain privileges which ordinary citizens enjoy.

  1. FluffyDevilBunny

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +21

    Talk to congress

    It's a law. It's called HIPAA and you don't get the right to have someone's medical information unless they wish you to know. It doesn't matter who you are, there are no exceptions in that law.

  1. bloggerblog

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -1

    Who!!

    Buffett can take-out his dentures and suck my d!ck.

  1. Salty

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +2

    I agree

    I agree anyone who thinks it's appropriate that everyone in the world know that someone is struggling with an illness deserves to be reading in the news about how everyone thinks they're going to die and everything they worked hard to build is gonna fall (which it wouldn't.)

    Fact is if these people actually consider Jobs an asset, they'd bugger off and let him rest in peace. Stress is a HUGE thing to factor into recovery.

  1. Tanker10a

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +9

    Whoa...Whoa

    What is eating WB? Did he lose money by Shorting or Longing AAPL?
    I was unaware that Steve Jobs was not entitled to privacy because of his status!?

  1. Tanker10a

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -3

    Whoa...Whoa

    What is eating WB? Did he lose money by Shorting or Longing AAPL?
    I was unaware that Steve Jobs was not entitled to privacy because of his status!?
    WTF!?

  1. deepwater

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +4

    HIPPA

    I think this would violate his privacy under HIPAA!
    http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/index.html
    SEC be damed!

  1. jvputten

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +8

    Re; as an investor

    "I think it certainly is a material fact that the CEO of the company - especially one as important as Jobs is to Apple - is seriously ill. Being a CEO means you give up certain privileges which ordinary citizens enjoy."

    Jobs wasn't CEO when the transplant was performed. This is why people take leaves of absence.

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