This is my new-found expert on Berkshire, Richard Losch, and his family.
Just found his web site and it has some excellent information on Berkshire Hathaway, its holdings, and further information on the markets. His last few letters have a negative spin to them, but I'm assuming because the market isn't really making a whole lot of sense (or returns) for the seasoned value investor. In addition, there's that "little" problem with China owning so much of the US it's not funny, plus the US dollar's loss over the last few years.
I'll be following his site closely. Looks like a great resource. Plus he's from Omaha, so he must be trustworthy. :)
On his friend who is a mortgage broker:
Losch Management - Client Letters - September 2005: "He is a happy camper with his present company because if a customer comes in with a FICO score of 700 or better, he can get a no documentation loan for 100% of the appraisal. (He said that he knew some good appraisers.) I asked what was clearly a stupid question. 'What kind debt-to-income ratio did the borrower have to show to get approved?' He gave me a look clearly reserved for the hopelessly naive and pointed out that since there was no documentation required, no application was ever submitted that did not show enough income. As Charlie says, 'All human systems are gamed.' Now as far as human misjudgment is concerned, in addition to the lollapalooza effect mentioned earlier, we have a big nasty lump of incentive-caused bias added."