How to Invest Like Warren Buffett and Carl Icahn

Warren Buffett and Carl Icahn are legendary investors, each renowned for their distinct investment philosophies and track records of success. While their approaches may differ, both Buffett and Icahn offer valuable insights into the stock market and the factors influencing its trajectory. In this article, we delve into the stocks favored by Buffett and Icahn, as well as their perspectives on where the market may be headed in the near future.

Warren Buffett: The Oracle of Omaha    

Warren Buffett, Chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, is celebrated for his value investing approach and long-term perspective. Buffett favors companies with strong competitive advantages, predictable earnings, and sustainable business models, often referred to as “Buffett stocks.”

Key holdings in Buffett’s portfolio include well-known companies such as Apple Inc. (AAPL), The Coca-Cola Company (KO), American Express Company (AXP), and Bank of America Corporation (BAC). Buffett’s investment decisions are guided by fundamental analysis, focusing on factors such as earnings growth, return on equity, and management quality. While Buffett maintains a bullish outlook on the U.S. economy over the long term, he remains vigilant about market valuations and opportunities for value investing amidst market fluctuations.

Carl Icahn: The Activist Investor

Carl Icahn, founder of Icahn Enterprises, is renowned for his activist investing approach, often taking significant stakes in companies and advocating for changes to unlock shareholder value. Icahn’s investment strategy is opportunistic and contrarian, seeking undervalued or distressed companies with potential for turnaround or strategic restructuring. Key holdings in Icahn’s portfolio have included companies across various sectors, including technology, energy, healthcare, and financial services. Icahn’s activism often involves engaging with management teams, advocating for corporate governance reforms, and pursuing strategic initiatives such as mergers, acquisitions, or divestitures. While Icahn is known for his skepticism towards market valuations and macroeconomic trends, he remains focused on identifying value opportunities and capitalizing on market inefficiencies.

Market Perspectives and Outlook:

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Annual Shareholder Letters and Carl Icahn’s public statements and interviews offer insights into their views on the market outlook. Buffett has historically emphasized the importance of staying invested in high-quality businesses for the long term, regardless of short-term market fluctuations. Icahn, known for his outspoken nature, has expressed concerns about market valuations, excessive corporate debt levels, and regulatory challenges impacting certain industries. Both investors acknowledge the unpredictability of market movements and advocate for a disciplined, patient approach to investing, grounded in thorough research and analysis.

Buffett’s Portfolio

Apple Inc. (AAPL): Berkshire Hathaway has held a significant stake in Apple, one of the world’s largest technology companies, for several years. Apple is known for its iconic products such as the iPhone, iPad, and Mac, as well as its expanding services business.

Bank of America Corporation (BAC): Berkshire Hathaway has a sizable investment in Bank of America, one of the largest banks in the United States. Bank of America provides a range of banking and financial services to consumers, businesses, and institutions.

The Coca-Cola Company (KO): Coca-Cola is a long-standing holding in Berkshire Hathaway’s portfolio. As one of the world’s leading beverage companies, Coca-Cola manufactures, markets, and distributes a diverse portfolio of non-alcoholic beverages.

American Express Company (AXP): Berkshire Hathaway has a stake in American Express, a global payments and financial services company. American Express is known for its charge and credit card products, as well as its travel-related services.

Wells Fargo & Company (WFC): Berkshire Hathaway has historically been a significant shareholder in Wells Fargo, one of the largest banks in the United States. However, Buffett has reduced Berkshire’s stake in Wells Fargo in recent years.

Kraft Heinz Company (KHC): Berkshire Hathaway holds a substantial stake in Kraft Heinz, a leading food and beverage company formed through the merger of Kraft Foods Group and H.J. Heinz Company. Kraft Heinz’s portfolio includes iconic brands such as Kraft, Heinz, Oscar Mayer, and Philadelphia.

Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ): Berkshire Hathaway has a position in Verizon, one of the largest telecommunications companies in the United States. Verizon provides wireless communications, broadband, and media services to consumers and businesses.

Icahn’s Stocks

Occidental Petroleum Corporation (OXY): Icahn has had a significant investment in Occidental Petroleum, an international oil and gas exploration and production company. He has been involved in shareholder activism at Occidental, advocating for changes in corporate governance and strategic direction.

CVS Health Corporation (CVS): Icahn has held shares in CVS Health, one of the largest healthcare companies in the United States. CVS Health operates pharmacies, retail clinics, and health insurance services, among other healthcare-related businesses.

Cloudera, Inc. (CLDR): Icahn has had a stake in Cloudera, a provider of enterprise data management and analytics software. Cloudera’s platform helps organizations manage and analyze large volumes of data for business insights and decision-making.

Xerox Holdings Corporation (XRX): Icahn has been involved in Xerox, a multinational corporation known for its document management solutions and printing technology. He has engaged in activism at Xerox, pushing for changes in corporate governance and strategic initiatives.

Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. (HTZGQ): Icahn has been a shareholder in Hertz, a car rental company, and has been involved in activist efforts to influence the company’s restructuring and bankruptcy proceedings.

Caesars Entertainment Corporation (CZR): Icahn has held shares in Caesars Entertainment, a global casino and hospitality company. He has been actively involved in influencing the company’s corporate governance and strategic decisions.

Herbalife Nutrition Ltd. (HLF): Icahn has been a prominent investor in Herbalife, a global multi-level marketing company that sells nutritional supplements and personal care products. His involvement in Herbalife has been the subject of significant attention and controversy.

It’s important to conduct thorough research and consult with a financial advisor before making any investment decisions. Additionally, investors should consider that Berkshire Hathaway’s portfolio holdings may change over time, and it’s essential to stay updated on the company’s latest disclosures and investment strategies.

Sectoral Preferences and Investment Themes:

While Buffett and Icahn may have differing sectoral preferences based on their investment strategies and market outlook, they both seek opportunities for value creation and capital appreciation. Buffett has historically favored consumer goods, financial services, and technology companies with enduring competitive advantages and strong brand recognition.

Icahn’s investments often reflect his opportunistic approach, with holdings spanning industries such as energy, healthcare, transportation, and real estate. Both investors are known for their willingness to pivot their portfolios based on changing market conditions, regulatory developments, and emerging investment themes.


Warren Buffett and Carl Icahn epitomize the diversity of approaches and perspectives within the world of investing, each offering valuable lessons for investors navigating the market landscape. While Buffett’s focus on value investing and Icahn’s activism may differ in execution, both investors share a commitment to disciplined, research-driven decision-making and a long-term orientation. As investors evaluate their own investment strategies and outlooks, drawing insights from the experiences and wisdom of Buffett and Icahn can provide valuable guidance in navigating the complexities of the market and identifying opportunities for long-term wealth creation.