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Alice Schroeder
Financial Columnist 
 Author, The Snowball
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Alice Schroeder
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Bestselling author of The SnowballBloomberg View columnist, and corporate director Alice Schroeder is a former all-star securities analyst, CPA, and regulator with senior experience in nearly every part of the financial world. From the boardroom to startups to the scandals of the financial crisis, Schroeder explains the big picture and its transformative lessons from the perspective of an inside player on the global financial scene. 

Schroeder’s bestseller, The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life, is a revealing and complete look at the life of Buffett and the business secrets he never before shared publicly. The book debuted at #1 on The New York TimesWall Street Journal, and Publisher’s Weekly bestseller lists.  

The Snowball has been called the “bible of capitalism” and “almost impossible to stop reading.” Named one of the best books of the year by TIME and The Financial Times, it was’s #1 Business and Investing Book of the year. The New York Times’ reviewer Janet Maslin hailed it as one of her top favorite books of the year, calling it a “definitive portrait.” 

Schroeder began her career as an auditor for Ernst & Young before becoming a regulator with the Financial Accounting Standards Board where she drafted some of the most significant accounting rules affecting the insurance industry. A former managing director at Morgan Stanley, she participated in key episodes of the financial crisis with AIG and MBIA, and was swept into the dramas at the investment banks, Berkshire Hathaway, and the rating agencies. 

Schroeder was ranked at the top of her profession in the Institutional Investor All-America Research poll. Risk and Insurance magazine called her "one of the most respected – and unafraid–thinkers on Wall Street." 

Since the financial crisis, Schroeder dived into the world of venture capital and private equity as an investor. She currently serves on the board of directors for Prudential PLC, Webtuner Corp., and Cetera Financial Group. The chair of Cetera's audit committee, she brings her knowledge of corporate governance, investing and regulation to the table. 

Schroeder writes for Bloomberg View and is at work on two books: one that will explain for the first time how Warren Buffett really selected his investments and got rich; and another on “adaptive entrepreneurship" following the Great Recession. 

Full Bio >
  • Women of Influence Networking Forum with Alice Schroeder and Jill Kaplan (2013)
  • Alice Schroeder talks to The Business Insider The Truth About Warren Buffett: Alice Schroeder...
Speaking Topics
Risk Management And Value Creation In Times Of Uncertainty

Why do some organizations thrive during periods of extraordinary risk and volatility? Why do others miss the meteor headed their way? Every company disgraced in the headlines, from Lehman to BP, had a risk management department that worked diligently, yet failed. It is all too easy to pursue an ill-advised risk disguised as an opportunity to create shareholder value. Alice Schroeder describes how successful organizations use scenarios to circumvent the built-in weaknesses of conventional risk management techniques. From her work as an auditor, a regulator, a financial analyst and a close observer of Warren Buffett, Schroeder draws from first-hand study of risk management decisions made by hundreds of insurers, financial institutions and risk managers at large corporations, the value they have created, and their success or failure after natural disasters, mass tort claims, 9/11, and economic bubbles.

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How Buffett Invests — And Beyond

Warren Buffett explains his investing style in simple-sounding concepts: buy stocks in companies with a “durable competitive advantage,” pay a price that includes a “margin of safety,” and “be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful.” But how do you apply these concepts in the real world? And is it really necessary to hold investments “forever” and avoid technology stocks? What if you could know the specific details of how Buffett applies these ideas. and which parts of Buffett’s style are self-imposed limitations that come from personality quirks. Alice Schroeder will explain.

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The Economic Road Ahead: Perils And Opportunities

The now-deflating Bubble Era was a global phenomenon in which artificially cheap debt financed consumer spending to create worldwide trade and currency imbalances. The result was years of “malinvestment” – capital allocated to the wrong things – especially a U.S. service economy built on the back of leverage. As this unwinds, the service economy is beginning to experience the restructuring that took place in manufacturing in the 1990s. Companies will face perils accompanied by historic opportunities. For example, great wealth is accruing to those who excel at innovatively producing tangible products, and companies that ride the trend of flushing out cost inefficiencies they see in other businesses will prosper. Join Alice Schroeder for a journey through what led us to this moment and how great businesses are capitalizing on it.

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Corporate Governance: Fixing What's Broken At The Top

From three decades of experience as an auditor, regulator, analyst, investor and board member, Schroeder tells the unexpected truth about why shareholders are so often ill-served by their stewards. Governance failures, often by well-intended people, do more than destroy value for investors. They also cost jobs and hurt a company’s business partners. This talk explains what the most effective boards are doing right and how a global movement for better corporate governance is gathering speed.

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Lessons For College Students From The Life Of Warren Buffett

Alice Schroeder gives a series of lessons directly applicable to those starting out in their professional and personal lives using the thousands of hours she spent with Warren Buffett and her 30 years of business experience. How did Buffett use simple mathematics to navigate his way through life, even when it came to getting along with people?
How did Buffett, a “learning machine,” squeeze the most out of his time and get the highest impact out of time spent learning? How did he make billions through a brilliant networking technique? Alice Schroeder will answer these and many other questions about how the legendary investor has run his life and the strategies students can apply on their own.

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Why We Need An Investing Revolution

Unprecedented market volatility, a herd mentality, money managers’ focus on gathering assets instead of producing profits, and the trend toward seeking tinier profits on ever-larger trading volumes are, collectively, symptoms of a bigger problem – the asset management business is broken. The cracks appear at the earliest stage of the capital markets, where startup businesses are born, and widen as companies grow to maturation. In this talk, Schroeder explores the problem, how to fix it, and what investors should do in the meantime.

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The Snowball: In The Room With Warren Buffett

Alice Schroeder, author of The Snowball, shares her rich personal history with Warren Buffett and describes his impact on her life. She examines the deliberate and considered approach that he applies – not just to investing – but to people, friendships, and mentoring – a series of life lessons, wisdom and philosophy that have yielded returns just as impressive (though far less recognized) as his financial feats.

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Inside The Mind Of An Analyst

Wall Street analysts move the markets and often, company CEOs jump to their commands. Despite their power, they’re reviled for embracing conflicts of interest and fostering a short-term mentality among investors. Because the consensus is that they don’t add value, why do nearly all companies feel obliged to cater to them? Why don’t analysts take a more long-term view? What really happens inside the mind of an analyst? Schroeder speaks from authority about the follies and frailties of Wall Street using revealing anecdotes about what goes on inside the investment banks.

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Books & Other Works
  • Bloomberg BusinessWeek Cover Story
  • The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life
““Alice Schroeder had our audience – which was filled with senior representatives of Canada’s investment industry – eating out of the palm of her hand. Her first-hand account of Warren Buffett isn’t simply anecdotal, but rather a careful analysis based on 2,000 hours of face-to-face exposure on what makes him tick and sets him apart. Alice’s delivery is entertaining, intellectual and inspiring.””
The Investment Industry Association of Canada (IIAC)
““Alice Schroeder was the highest rated speaker at the conference. She was also fun to deal with in advance.””
California Credit Union League
““She weaves a fabulous story, talking about the personality of Buffet as well as the appetite for risk, the issues and concerns that go into his decision making, along with the financial debacles of the past couple of years. There were easily over 750 people in her session and the line at the book store to have Snowball signed was long!.... The attendees have given her rave reviews.””
Association for Financial Professionals
““The audience was riveted to hear about Warren Buffett's life, family and business relationships...Alice Schroeder's thoughts and comments added much to everyone's insight of a complex and brilliant man.””
America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP)
““Our event was a success. Alice Schroeder was lovely!””
Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University
““We fielded positive feedback on your presentation. You were well prepared and very informative, successfully capturing the audience's attention. Compliance and legal officers are better equipped to tackle their responsibilities as a result of your presentation.””
American Council of Life Insurers
““Members are still raving about your keynote session. You were engaging, warm and substantive.””
The Committee of 200
““You truly charmed us with your presentation at the Friends' Book & Author Luncheon.... You were pitch perfect for our audience.””
Friends of Ferguson Library, Inc.
““You were wonderful....You had a big impact.””
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