How to Invest like Warren Buffett using Google Sheets

Warren Buffett is one of the most famous and successful investors of all time. At the time of this writing his networth is $86.5 billion USD. He has been value investing for over 50 years which means that he can provide a lot of wisdom based on his experiences with the financial markets.

Perhaps you are one of those people who wants to use Warren Buffett’s wisdom to assess and invest in companies for the long-term but are bogged down by jargon, lack of experience and not enough time. Wouldn’t it be nice if Warren Buffett was your advisor? Let me show you how Warren Buffett could be your advisor (without even talking to him) by using freely available information and tools on the Internet.

To be clear I am not going to teach you how to do value investing since it is out of my league (for now). Instead, I am going to teach you how to copy/imitate/replicate Warren Buffett’s portfolio. A word of caution, even Warren Buffett makes mistakes so always consult your financial advisor for your specific situation.

Warren Buffett said:

Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.

What You Will Need

Today, you are going to learn to plant a seed of your financial tree using the following free information and tools:

  1. Google Sheets
  2. Whale Wisdom for getting 13F Filing Data
  3. Yahoo! Finance
  4. An online commission-free brokerage account (e.g., Robinhood)

At the end of this, your Google Sheet should look something like this:

The Steps

Step 1 — Getting Google Sheets Workbook Ready:

  1. Open a blank Google Sheet workbook and name it whatever you want (e.g., My Empire).
  2. On cell B1 (it could be any cell but for me I like to have information upfront), write How much money do you want to spend on buying shares?rty3
  3. On cell E1, write the amount.

Step 2 — Getting 13F Filing Data

  1. Go to Whale Wisdom to get Berkshire Hathaway Inc.’s 13F filing data. FYI — Warren Buffett is Berkshire Hathaway Inc.’s CEO.
  2. Copy that 13f filing data onto your Google Sheet workbook.

Step 3 — Setting Up Your Columns

  1. Remove columns you don’t need. I have removed some for simplicity.
  2. Create the following columns:
  • Recent Price
  • Are you paying less than Warren Buffett per share?
  • Approximate money you could spend on this Share
  • Approximate number of Shares you will get with your money
  • Dividends Per Share Per Year
  • Dividends Expected To Be Received Per Year
  • To Be Eligible for Dividends Buy Shares Before This Date

Step 4 — Lets do some coding (kindof)

  1. To get latest (20 minute delayed) current price of a share, on cell E3 type =GOOGLEFINANCE(A3)
Cell E3

2. To compare if you paid less for a share than Warren Buffett, on cell F3, type =if(E3<D3, “Yes”, “No”)

Cell F3

3. To calculate how much of your money should go to this stock, on cell G3, type =($E$1*B3)/100

Cell G3

4. On cell H3, type =G3/E3

Cell H3

5. On cell I3, type =LEFT(IMPORTXML(“"&$A3&"","//*[@id='quote-summary']/div[2]/table/tbody/tr[6]/td[2]"),4)

Cell I3

6. On cell J3, type =H3*I3

Cell J3

7. On cell K3, type =IMPORTXML(“"&$A3&"","//*[@id='quote-summary']/div[2]/table/tbody/tr[7]")

Cell K3

Ok. Done. This Google Sheet will pull information from Yahoo! Finance. The beauty of this Google Sheet is that you can put any Stock Symbol in column A and it will pull information in. In this case, you might want to remove the columns where you compare yourself to Warren Buffett.

Step 5 (optional)— Lets Get Fancy

What Google Sheets can do is just the tip of the (data) iceberg plus its free. If you have gotten this far, you can also do some fancy? things such as:

  1. To pull 52-week low for the share on cell M3, type =GOOGLEFINANCE(A3, “low52”)
  2. To pull 52-week high for the share on cell N3, type =GOOGLEFINANCE(A3, “high52”)
  3. To calculate if the current price is < than the 52-week average, type =if(E3<((M3+N3)/2), “Yes”, “No”)

Feel free to add/share your fancy tweaks and improvements in the comments section.


Now that you are equipped with this new tool that you created, perhaps it is time to test it out. Remember that your Google Sheet workbook is pulling data from other sources and thus if something happens to the data sources then your Google Sheet workbook might have issues. For those of you who want to look at the actual Google Sheet workbook, the link is here.

I suggest the Robinhood app because I found it easy to use since it also gives you the ability to buy fractional shares meaning you can buy in dollar amounts.

Happy Investing!

Full Disclosure: When you sign up with this Robinhood app link, you will get 1 free stock and I will get 1 free stock. Also, I am not a financial advisor so be sure to consult with your financial advisor before making any decisions. Also, all investments involve risk, so always do your own due diligence and take things with a grain of salt.

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