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Thousands of fans line up outside for hours, there’s expensive merchandise and even a secret movie.

When 40,000 people descend on Omaha, Nebraska, Saturday, it might sound like a Taylor Swift concert or a Coachella-style festival.

Instead they will sit rapturously for five hours listening to a 93-year-old man answering questions on the economy  but not just any man: billionaire investor Warren Buffett.

Welcome to the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholders meeting, dubbed “Woodstock for capitalism” and compared by attendees to going to church or seeing The Beatles live.

Inside the CHI Health Center Omaha, ordinary shareholders mingle with celebrities such as Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bill Murray and Glenn Close and the biggest names in business, including Bill Gates, JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon, and Apple’s Tim Cook.

The annual pilgrimage to Omaha is the most fanatical followers of Buffett, the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, America’s 7th largest company, which owns companies including Geico, Dairy Queen, BNSF Railway and NetJets, and large stakes in Apple, American Express, Coca-Cola, Kraft Heinz and Chevron.

The cost of admission is as low as $396, a single Berkshire Hathaway class B share, but the wisdom dispensed by the man with a net worth of $132 billion is, say attendees, priceless.

Christopher Bloomstran has attended every year since 2000 except once, when his daughter was born two weeks before the meeting and calls it the highlight of each year.

“Ive met some of my best friends in the investment arena at the Berkshire,” said Bloomstran, who is chief investment officer of Semper Augustus Investments Group  in St. Louis, Missouri.

I go Wednesday and often stay until Monday.”

Adam Mead, who runs Mead Capital Management and has been going for 10 years said: I dont go to church but it’s like church: You know what the message will be, it’s the same stories, and you hear current events through the lens of timeless wisdom.

Bill Gates is out there as is Jamie Dimon he shook my hand and took a pic. One time Warren shook my hand. That was a memorable moment.”

The weekend begins Friday when Omahas Conference Center opens for conference-goers to pick up credentials for the festivities which include the meeting, a picnic and a 5K. (Buffett does not take part.)

But the event’s core is Saturday when Buffett and other Berkshire leaders address the crowd, many of whom arrive at 3am.

Chris Fried, an attorney from Pennsylvania, who will be attending for the 10th time always stays in walking distance of the conference center so he is in line by 3AM and prepared for the mad dash for the best seats once the doors open and shareholders flood in.

“By 4am – I would say the line is about 100 feet deep,” he said. By 7 am – it is down several blocks.

Fried said he stumbled on Berkshire when he first read Warren’s annual letter to shareholders 20 years ago.

“It read like beautiful poetry to me and I purchased my first B shares within the week. I haven’t looked back.

In the line he has met Buffett fans from as far afield as Australia, as well as Japan, China, Germany and the UK, many of whom have become friends.

“You never know who you’ll bump into,” Friend adds. “One year I sat next to two NFL players.”

Mead said: Ive made some of my really good friends out there just standing in line. Im staying in an Airbnb with some of them this year.

By 8:45AM attendees are ready for Buffetts annual film which opens the event and which is never seen outside the hall.

Only two still images have ever leaked. One, in 2015, was a pastiche of “Breaking Bad,” with Buffett appearing with Bryan Cranston, its star, to cook, not meth, but See’s Candy, one of the brands which has made Buffett rich. Another, in 2002, was Buffett playing the ukelele.

He has done skits with Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bryan Cranston, Manny Pacquiao, and Jamie Lee Curtis,” Mac Sykes, portfolio manager of the Gabelli Equity Trust, who has been attending for 15 years said. “They’re worth arriving early for.”

This year will be different in part because Charlie Munger, Berkshire’s vice chair and Buffett’s on-stage sidekick until he died at 99 last November, won’t be there for the first time.

Elie-Chakib Abou-Chacra, a portfolio manager from Canada who is attending for the second time, said the annual meeting is the equivalent of being a Beatles fan seeing McCartney perform onstage. 

I get to see my hero on stage if youre a fan of McCartney or an old rock guy you never know when it will be his last tour but you know you want to see them onstage before they go.

Off stage, the conference center features specialized merch from companies owned by Berkshire, including Squishmallow who sell a Warren Buffett version of their plush toy Brooks Sports, Fruit of the Loom, and Dairy Queen.

Buffett tours by golf cart, with people taking selfies as he passes. They also take photos with cutouts of him dotted around the floor.

Last year See’s Candies sold Buffett’s fans 11 tons of confectionery which included “Warren’s Favorite Chocolate Walnut Fudge.”

Stephen Tedder, an ophthalmologist from Atlanta, told The Post that he fell in love with Buffett’s wisdom after he stumbled on a Berkshire report during the 2008 financial crisis.

“You could see the authentic Midwest moral fiber of Warren and Charlie [Munger], their clarity of thought, written word and plain speak,” he told The Post.

This will be his third meeting, having started coming in 2022, because he made a growing number of good friends.

Women make up just 20% of attendees, sources told The Post.

April Samuelson, a tech worker from Chicago, has attended twice and each time had to explain why she was there solo.

The weird thing about attending as a woman is other investors tended to assume that I was a wife or girlfriend,” Samuelson said.

“I had to clarify that I had stock of my own. When asked why, I just went with I like money.’

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GB News show with Rishi Sunak broke broadcasting rules, Ofcom finds

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GB News show with Rishi Sunak broke broadcasting rules, Ofcom finds

GB News could face punishment after a programme with Rishi Sunak broke broadcasting rules.

Regulator Ofcom said it was considering a “statutory sanction” after finding ‘People’s Forum: The Prime Minister’ breached impartiality guidelines.

GB News called it “an alarming development” that “strikes at the heart of democracy”.

The hour-long show, which aired on 12 February, saw members of the public put questions to the prime minister. However, it received 547 complaints.

Ofcom said in March that five other GB News programmes featuring politicians acting as presenters – including two hosted by Jacob Rees-Mogg – also broke impartiality rules.

The watchdog said the show featuring Mr Sunak was fine in principle, but “due weight” should have been given to an “appropriately wide range of significant views” other than the Tories’.

These should have happened during the programme itself or “in other clearly linked and timely programmes”.

It said Mr Sunak “had a mostly uncontested platform to promote the policies and performance of his Government in a period preceding a UK General Election”.

“We have therefore recorded a breach of rules 5.11 and 5.12 of the Broadcasting Code against GB News,” it added.

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The channel was quick to hit back at the ruling and denied breaking the impartiality rules.

“The regulator’s threat to punish a news organisation with sanctions for enabling people to challenge their own prime minister strikes at the heart of democracy at a time when it could not be more vital,” it said.

“Our live programme gave an independently selected group of undecided voters the freedom to challenge the Prime Minister without interference,” added the channel.

It said neither producers nor the prime minister had seen the questions beforehand and Mr Sunak was kept “under constant pressure and covered a clearly diverse range of topics”.

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Sports

Source: Boeser (blood clots) not expected in G7

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Source: Boeser (blood clots) not expected in G7

Vancouver Canucks right wing Brock Boeser is not expected to play in Game 7 of their second-round series against the Edmonton Oilers on Monday because of a blood-clotting issue, a source told ESPN, confirming a report.

There’s no timeline for his return to action. The Canucks had no comment on Boeser’s status.

Boeser didn’t skate in practice Sunday. Coach Rick Tocchet would only say at a media availability that “he needed the maintenance day.”

Boeser, 27, leads the Canucks in goals (7) and is tied for the lead in points (12) during the postseason. He established career highs in goals (40), points (73) and games played (81) during the regular season.

The Canucks winger has had some MVP moments during their playoff run. His hat trick in Game 4 against the Nashville Predators led them to a comeback win. Boeser’s three points in the first period of Game 3 led Vancouver to a win over Edmonton.

It’s the second significant injury for Vancouver in the playoffs after a regular season of relatively good health for the team’s core players. Starting goaltender Thatcher Demko, a finalist for the Vezina Trophy as the NHL’s best netminder, hasn’t played since Game 1 of the first round because of a knee injury. Edmonton won Game 6 at home Saturday night to force Monday’s Game 7, the only seventh game of the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. The winner faces the Dallas Stars in the Western Conference finals.

The Boeser injury news was first reported by Vancouver-based hockey journalist Irfaan Gaffar.

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Sports

U.S. advances at hockey worlds; Canada now 6-0

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U.S. advances at hockey worlds; Canada now 6-0

PRAGUE — Dylan Cozens scored two goals and had an assist to rally Canada past Switzerland 3-2 for its sixth win in six games at the ice hockey world championship on Sunday.

Canada leads Group A with 17 points, two more than the Czech Republic in second with Switzerland another point back in third. The three teams had already clinched a spot in the playoff round.

Cozens has scored six goals at the tournament and is tied atop the scoring table with American Brady Tkachuk and Finland’s Oliver Kapanen.

Nick Paul also scored for Canada and goaltender Jordan Binnington made 20 saves including a penalty shot in the second period when the score was 2-2.

Cozens found the roof of the net on a power play 1:42 into the game to give Canada an early lead.

Switzerland answered with two goals.

Kevin Fiala wristed an equalizer past Binnington in the opening frame on a power play.

Romain Loeffel put the Swiss 2-1 up in the middle period with a slap shot from the blue line.

Cozens tied it again at 2-2 from the top of the left circle on a power play.

Paul scored the winner for Canada on a power play, completing a series of passes by scoring into an open goal midway through the second.

Canada will complete the preliminary round on Tuesday against the Czech Republic, when Switzerland will face Finland.

In Group B, Latvia prevailed over Slovakia 3-2 in a penalty shootout. The result sent the United States to the next round.

Tkachuk scored three power play goals and added an assist to help the United States rout Kazakhstan 10-1.

Its fourth victory lifted the Americans to second place in Group B with 13 points, one ahead of Germany and Slovakia with a game against Latvia, which has nine points, on Tuesday to play in the preliminary round.

Johnny Gaudreau had a goal and four assists to become the United States record scorer with 43 points, one more than Patrick Kane.

Matt Boldy scored twice and had four assists, Brock Nelson and Luke Kunin both had a goal and an assist, and Gavin Brindley and Kevin Hayes also scored.

Alex Nedeljkovic made 13 saves.

In a four-goal opening period, Tkatchuk tipped in a shot by Zach Werenski on a power play to increase the U.S. lead to 2-0, and buried a rebound to make it 4-0 on a power play.

He completed his hat trick to increase the advantage to 8-0 with a one-timed shot from the right circle on another power play in the final period.

Alikhan Omirbekov scored the consolation goal for Kazakhstan when his team was 9-0 down.

In Group A, Austria beat Norway 4-1 and is tied for fourth place with Finland.

The top four from each group advance to the playoff round.

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