1960s Warren Buffett was interesting. 2020s Buffett? Not so much.
I think there are two main factors why people do not invest like a young Warren Buffett:
1. The obvious factor is that it takes a lot of work. One actually needs to crack open multiple annual reports, understand them, dig through the numbers and find the real opportunities. By contrast, investing in compounders takes less effort. One invests in the story, read the earnings release, only look at a few metrics (ex: revenue growth!).
2. The second factor is that investing like a young Warren Buffett is a lonely endeavour. You are often one of a few to locate an opportunity and often cannot confirm your idea with anyone else. By contrast, investing in compounders provides the comfortable feeling of investing with the crowd.
The additional factor is that there is no real defined playbook for Buffett partnership investing. Every situation is fairly unique and the investor must rely on judgment. By contrast, investing in compounders often sounds like the following: "This company can be the next [insert name of past successful company based on survivorship bias]."
Warren and Charlie rarely talk about their early days. How many would know that they did (and still do!) use leverage, when they prominently say to avoid it. Having to adjust rhetoric for lowest common denominator
It's fairly simple: Investing like Buffett's early days requires hard work.
Much easier to copy the crowd and it always has been.
Also, the ones with ideas that will compound at 50%/year aren't going to shout them from the rooftops. They'll quietly accumulate and compound.
1. You have to know quite a lot about the small cap companies to have enough of a conviction to invest in them.
2. There is a lot of competition today unlike when Buffet was running the partnership.
3. The risk of losing money is much higher with small caps.
4. Safer stocks like Microsoft and Alphabet have had tremendous growth over the last 10 years.