For many years I have wondered just that, but after a comment I received here the other week I finally decided to get to the bottom of it once and for all :) I’m sure you’ve laid awake many a nights wondering the same too! Haha…
Here’s what that comment said:
“It is always smart to have a little bit of Warren Buffett and a little bit of Jimmy Buffett in your portfolio.”
I couldn’t agree more ;) It was left by a Ted Jenkin over at oXYGen Financial, who then went on to say that Buffett #1 (Warren) likes to buy and keep stocks forever, whereas Buffett #2 (Jimmy) prefers to have someone else manage ’em for him through the wild mood swings as it’s “always 5 0’clock somewhere.” And indeed it is.
Now having known Jimmy Buffett my entire life as we grew up listening to him (one of the first tapes I owned was “Songs You Know by Heart!”), I have always thought of him as a pimp. And someone I’d love to party with one day – after my self-imposed alcohol ban if possible. Warren, on the other hand, has only recently come into my life as my obsession with money grew to epic proportions. But I’d equally enjoy meeting this Buffett too – only this time *without* the alcohol as I’d need to remember all those nuggets of wisdom he’d of course be passing over to me! :)
My first search into this DNA mystery led me to this article done by Fortune in 1999, and then reposted on CNN MONEY. It finds that Warren Buffett’s sister, Doris – a genealogist – had mailed out 125 questionnaires to all the Buffetts living in the U.S. trying to get to the bottom of it, and while she gets close, there was nothing really solid to link the two of them together.
“Despite the lack of absolute proof that they’re related (as of press time, no DNA testing had been conducted), Warren and Jimmy have become friends. While Jimmy insists “Uncle Warren” doesn’t slip him any investing tips, the two have been known to break out in song. “I think he’s angling to get into my will,” the billionaire Buffett jokes. “But the way things are going, I’d rather be in his.”
After that article, I found another – also by Fortune – written 8 years later :) Which involved Google co-founder Sergey Brin’s wife and her startup, 23andMe, which decodes DNA to help people understand their ancestry more (the name comes from our 23 paired chromosomes). And who was also apparently intrigued by the possibility of them being related!
The mystery ended shortly there after:
“About two months ago Warren and Jimmy submitted DNA to 23andMe. (Warren “just kept spitting into a little receptacle, and then we FedExed it. Not very elegant,” says his assistant. Jimmy did the same.) When the results came back… [they] called Warren … and broke the news that he need not include Jimmy in his will… As it turns out, Jimmy and Warren do have common ancestors, but you have to go back more than 10,000 years to find them.”
So as awesome as it would have been if they were related, sadly Mr. Jimmy and Mr. Warren are not. Nor do they have some superior bloodline that can beat out 99.9999999% of mankind ;) What they are, however, are great role models to us. And one day I can only hope to run into them over a scrumptious cheeseburger in paradise!
PS: Doesn’t Jimmy look like an awful lot like Larry David now? Haha…