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Warren Buffett: I feel great despite cancer diagnosis

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The world’s most successful investor, Warren Buffett, says he has no intention of stepping down as head of US investment icon Berkshire Hathaway (BRKA: US), despite being diagnosed with early-stage prostate cancer.

In a letter to Berkshire shareholders, Buffett said the cancer did not appear to be not spreading. He will undergo radiation treatment in July.

Buffett, 81, said his condition was “not remotely life-threatening or even debilitating in any meaningful way”.

“I feel great – as if I were in my normal excellent health – and my energy level is 100%,” wrote Buffett. “I will let shareholders know immediately should my health situation change. Eventually, of course, it will; but I believe that day is a long way off.”

In an interview with 60 Minutes in December, Buffett revealed that his son Howard would be his eventual successor at Berkshire Hathaway.

Buffett, the world’s third-richest person according to Forbes, has been in the spotlight as Washington lawmakers consider comprehensive tax reform after the businessman publically stated that he did not think it was fair that his secretary paid a higher percentage of tax than he did.

President Barack Obama has jumped on the comments by the billionaire and has been touting the Buffett Rule, which proposes that millionaires and billionaires such as Buffett shouldn’t pay a lower percentage of tax than middle-class households.

Republicans in the Senate voted down Obama’s proposal.

Buffet is noted for his adherence to the value investing philosophy. Despite being worth an estimated $US44 billion ($AU42.32 billion) he is noted for his frugality, and still lives in a stucco house in Omaha, Nebraska, which he bought for $US31,500.

Buffett is also a philanthropist, who has said he will give away 99% of his fortune.

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