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Warren Buffet at a 2019 shareholders' meeting. Photo: Houston Cofield/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Robinhood on Monday said that recent criticisms of the no-fee trading app by Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger were insults against younger investors, blasting the billionaires as out-of-touch elites who are "acting like they are the only oracles of investing."

The big picture: Critics have said that Robinhood — which says its mission " is to democratize finance for all," and has sought to popularize retail investing — pushes users into making more trades and reckless investing with its mobile game-like design and addictive elements.

Driving the news: Buffett criticized Robinhood at a virtual shareholder meeting Saturday, saying the trading platform is “taking advantage of the gambling instincts of society,” Barron's reports.

  • Buffett said the company has become "a very significant part of the casino group that has joined into the stock market in the last year or year and a half."
  • “It creates its own reality for a while, and nobody tells you when the clock is going to strike 12 and it all turns to pumpkins and mice," he said. He added there is "nothing illegal to it, there's nothing immoral, but I don't think you build a society around people doing it."
  • Buffett's longtime lieutenant Charlie Munger said at the shareholder meeting that Robinhood is "deeply wrong" and "god awful that something like that brought investments from civilized men and decent citizens."

What they're saying: "If the last year has taught us anything, it is that people are tired of the Warren Buffetts and Charlie Mungers of the world acting like they are the only oracles of investing," the company said in a statement.

  • "It is clear that the elites benefited from a stock market that kept many families sidelined from participating while they amassed huge wealth from decades of investing — driving a deep wedge between the haves and have-nots."
  • "Retail investing in America is thriving today because everyday investors are seizing the opportunity to build their own nest egg. It may never be nearly as big as the billions upon billions that the elites in this country have amassed. But it sure is something to celebrate."

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
Updated Jul 29, 2021 - Economy & Business

Robinhood stumbles out of the gate

Data: YCharts Chart: Axios

Robinhood, the company that was founded to disrupt Wall Street, was taught a painful lesson by Wall Street investors on Thursday.

Why it matters: Robinhood attempted to revolutionize the initial stock offering by allocating a large number of shares to its own small-dollar investors. Those investors are now sitting on a significant loss, even as Robinhood's multibillionaire founders both sold about $50 million of shares at the IPO price.

Robinhood prices IPO at $38

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Robinhood priced its IPO at the bottom of its price range at $38 a share on Wednesday, giving it a valuation of just under $32 billion.

Why it matters: The no-fee trading app maker made an unusually large allocation of its IPO shares available to retail investors, which is expected to make its opening day on the market less predictable.

Tina Reed, author of Vitals
18 mins ago - Health

Overturning Roe could strain abortion access even in blue states

The Supreme Court is reflected in a woman's sunglasses during a march Oct. 2. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

If the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, abortions could be harder to access even in states where they remain legal, because those clinics could be flooded with patients from states that have cracked down.

The big picture: This has happened before, and clinics fear the crush of demand would be a major problem in the immediate wake of a decision that would allow states to ban abortion.