Buffett's magical touch as a long-term investor is so well known, it has become the stuff of financial legend. Investors still dream of the compounded millions they would have banked had they -- or their parents -- been smart (or lucky) enough to buy a handful of shares back when Buffett took control of Berkshire in 1965.
Recent shareholders, however, are still waiting to see some wizardry. Berkshire's shares have returned 2.7% year to date vs. 4% for the S&P 500 index. Over the past five years -- a boom time for value investors -- Berkshire shares are up 61% compared with 70% for the index.