FRI, MAY 20, 2022
More big names added to first quarter buying spree
With big purchases of Occidental Petroleum, Chevron, HP, and Activision Blizzard shares, and the acquisition of Alleghany, we already knew Berkshire Hathaway was busy during the first three months of the year.
We now know it was even busier.
This week's 13F filing from the company reveals it also added several new names to its equity portfolio, including several 10-digit surprises.
- Citigroup: 55.2 million shares currently worth $2.7 billion
Paramount Global: 68.9 million shares currently worth $2.3 billion
- Celanese: 7.9 million shares currently worth $1.2 billion
The Hollywood Reporter says Paramount CFO Naveen Chopra told an investor conference, "We’ve always believed there’s a lot of upside, so it’s exciting to see someone with Berkshire’s track record see a lot of that same opportunity."
Berkshire also bought new stakes in McKesson ($943 million), Markel ($566 million), and Ally Financial ($347 million).
Several positions already in Berkshire's portfolio received additions:
- Apple: Increased stake by 0.4%, 3.8 million shares, currently worth $521 million
Liberty Media (Formula 1): Increased stake by 264%, 5.6 million shares, currently worth $350 million
Floor & Decor Holdings: Increased stake by 467%, 3.9 million shares, currently worth $270 million
RH: Increased stake by 19%, 353 thousand shares, currently worth $95 million
General Motors: Increased stake by 3%, 2.0 million shares, currently worth $72 million
VIDEO (Squawk Box): Berkshire snaps up shares of Citi, sells most of VZ stake (May 17)
While there was a lot more buying than selling of stocks in the first quarter, $45.4 billion to $9.7 billion (based on March 31 prices), Berkshire did dramatically slash one large holding.
More than 99% of its stake in Verizon was liquidated, with the sale of 157.4 million shares, currently worth around $7.8 billion.
Berkshire only started building this current stake in the summer of 2020.
Over those seven quarters, the stock fell 7.6%.
It wasn't entirely a surprise. Last week, I noted that based on clues in Berkshire's 10-Q report, Barron's predicted the company had sold "all or most" of its Verizon stake.
VIDEO (Halftime Report): Berkshire Reveals $2.6B Paramount buy & $3B Citi stake (May 17)
The other reductions:
Abbvie: Eliminated entire stake of 3.0 million shares, currently worth $458 million.
Bristol-Myers Squibb: Eliminated entire stake of 5.2 million shares, currently worth $397 million
Royalty Pharma: Decreased stake by 83%, 7.2 million shares, currently worth $283 million
Store Capital: Decreased stake by 40%, 9.7 million shares, currently worth $252 million
Kroger: Decreased stake by 6%, 3.4 million shares, currently worth $166 million
And, finally, after starting in the spring of 2017 to chip away at what was then a $27.6 billion stake, Berkshire finally sold the last of its Wells Fargo stock, 676 thousand shares, currently worth $28 million.
VIDEO (Squawk on the Street): Buffett buys energy stocks, boosts OXY position (May 16)
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BERKSHIRE'S TOP U.S. STOCK HOLDINGS - May 20, 2022
Berkshire's top holdings of disclosed publicly-traded U.S. stocks by market value, based on today's closing prices.
Holdings are as of March 31, 2022 as reported in Berkshire Hathaway’s 13F filing on May 16, 2022, except for Apple, Bank of America, and U.S. Bancorp, which also include shares held as of Mar 31, 2022 as disclosed in New England Asset Management’s 13F filing on May 14, 2022, and except for Occidental Petroleum, which is as of May 12, 2022.
In addition to U.S. stocks, shares held as of December 31, 2021 of China's BYD, as listed in Buffett's 2021 letter to shareholders, are included. The price of those shares in U.S. trading is used to approximate the current market value of the position. The value of the stake as a percentage of the company's market value is fixed at what was listed as of December 31, 2021 in the letter.
The full list of holdings and current market values is available from CNBC.com's Berkshire Hathaway Portfolio Tracker.
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-- Alex Crippen, Editor, Warren Buffett Watch