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Trump To Buffett: 'Should Have Kept The Airline Stocks'

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Trump To Buffett: 'Should Have Kept The Airline Stocks'

U.S. President Donald Trump held a press conference on Friday morning following a jobs report from the Labor Department that blew economist expectations out of the water.

In his speech, Trump noted that plenty of smart experts have missed the mark when it comes to the resiliency of the U.S. economy amid the COVID-19 outbreak, and he specifically mentioned Wall Street legend and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK-A) (NYSE: BRK-B) CEO Warren Buffett.

“Warren Buffett sold airlines a little while ago. He’s been right his whole life. But sometimes even somebody like Warren Buffett--I have a lot of respect for him--they make mistakes. They should have kept the airline stocks because the airline stocks went through the roof today and others did too. The whole market went through the roof,” Trump said.

Buffett On Airlines

Buffett sold Berkshire’s entire stakes in Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL), American Airlines Group Inc (NASDAQ: AAL), United Airlines Holdings Inc (NASDAQ: UAL) and Southwest Airlines Co (NYSE: LUV) back in April near their lowest points of the coronavirus sell-off.

At Berkshire’s annual shareholder meeting in early May, Buffett said he had been wrong to invest in airline stocks.

"I just decided that I'd made a mistake...in investing in the airlines business,” Buffett said. "It's a very difficult business. The future is much less clear to me how the business will turn out."

Since May 1, the four airline stocks Buffett sold are up between 40% and 90% each.

Buffett & Trump

Buffett was a supporter of Trump’s 2016 election opponent Hillary Clinton, but he has mostly remained silent on Trump since he took office.

"I'm not in the business of attacking any president, nor do I think I should be," Buffett said in a 2017 interview.

On Friday, Trump said Americans who didn’t panic and dump their stocks have been rewarded far quicker than many experts anticipated.

“If people didn’t get rid of stocks in their 401(k)s, they’re almost even. Think of it,” Trump said.

Benzinga’s Take

A rebound in the stock market and the economy is a huge development when it comes to Trump’s re-election prospects come November. Following Friday’s rally, the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (NYSE: SPY) is up 43.7% since March 23 and now down just 0.4% overall year to date.

Do you agree with this take? Email feedback@benzinga.com with your thoughts.

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