FRI, AUG 26, 2022
Buffett set to buy more OXY, but will he buy the whole company?
The consensus appears to be that Berkshire won't be going for all of Occidental anytime soon, but there's a good chance it could happen later.
Among those predicting Buffett will make OXY a wholly-owned Berkshire subsidiary at some point in the future, if not now, is University of Maryland finance professor David Kass.
He is quoted by CNBC.com as saying, "I think it is likely that Buffett will buy the whole thing eventually. The 50% limit may have been set to receive FERC approval for a non-controlling stake. He clearly plans to purchase additional shares."
And The Wall Street Journal did an entire article on why Buffett is "not expected" to go for all of OXY, "at least for now."
It quotes "people close to the matter" as saying Buffett hasn't said anything to Occidental about trying to buy a controlling stake, and given his "well-known aversion to hostile deal making, it would be out of character for him to make a bid without sounding out the company's executives and directors first."
(Sounds to me like the "people close to the matter" are Occidental people.)
Occidental Petroleum CEO Vicki Hollub speaks at the 2019 Milken Institute Global Conference. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
But the Journal says Occidental could welcome a Buffett bid in the future.
"People familiar with deliberations at Occidental said the company's leadership believes Mr. Buffett might consider making an offer if oil prices fall, bringing down Occidental's stock price. If Mr. Buffett made an offer the company viewed as fair, a majority of the Occidental's board would likely approve presenting it to shareholders, one of the people said."
Those "people" are also pointing out that Buffett has a "friendly and collaborative relationship" with CEO Vicki Hollub. They "speak regularly" and Buffett has told her, "Keep doing what you're doing."
BUFFETT AROUND THE INTERNET
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BERKSHIRE'S TOP U.S. STOCK HOLDINGS - Aug. 26, 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 June 30, 2022 as reported in Berkshire Hathaway’s 13F filing on August 15, 2022, except for Apple, Bank of America, Chevron, and U.S. Bancorp, which also include shares held as of June 30, 2022 as disclosed in New England Asset Management’s 13F filing on August 15, 2022, and except for Occidental Petroleum, which is as of August 8, 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.
As a result of my own error, last week's newsletter did not include Berkshire Stock Watch and Berkshire's Top U.S. Stock Holdings.
A corrected version is available here.
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-- Alex Crippen, Editor, Warren Buffett Watch