FRI, APR 07, 2023
Buffett remains Forbes' fifth richest person in the world
Warren Buffett's estimated net worth declined by $12 billion to $106 billion since last year's annual ranking of the world's billionaires by Forbes, but he is still number five on the publication's list.
It is his first decline since 2020, when he had an estimated $67.5 billion, down from 2019's $82.5 billion.
He is not alone. Forbes writes, "Falling stocks, wounded unicorns and rising interest rates translated into a down year for the world’s wealthiest people." It estimates the combined wealth of all the billionaires around the globe is $12.2 trillion, down $500 billion from last year.
Warren Buffett appeared on the Forbes 100th anniversary issue in 2017. (Forbes.com)
Last year, he was trailing Bill Gates' $129 billion in the fourth slot. This year, his longtime friend is #6 with $104 billion.
Larry Ellison, last year's #8, is ahead of Buffett this year in fourth place with $107 billion.
Since he announced in 2006 that he would be donating the bulk of the wealth to charity, Buffett has given away Berkshire stock now worth more than $117 billion.
If he had not done so, his net worth would be more than $224 billion, topping LVMH's Bernard Arnault, the new number one on this year's Forbes list with $211 billion.
(As part of its Billionaires 2023 coverage, Forbes has a piece headlined "Why Warren Buffett Wants Jimmy Buffett To Write Him Into His Will." Jimmy Buffett, the musician, is ranked #2540 with $1 billion in his first appearance in the ranking.)
Berkshire plans to sell more yen-denominated bonds
In a preliminary SEC filing, Berkshire Hathaway says it is planning to borrow Japanese yen by selling bonds denominated in the currency.
Details, including the amount it hopes to raise and the rates it will pay, will be announced as the planned sale is solidified in the coming days, depending on market conditions, according to Nikkei.
The filing says the proceeds will be used for "general corporate purposes," including the refinancing of yen-denominated debt that is set to mature on April 14.
Nikkei notes that Berkshire has sold yen bonds every year since 2019, including a December offering of 115 billion yen, or about $870 million.
It also announced last November that it had increased its stakes in five of Japan's largest "trading houses" to more than 6%. They are highly diversified companies that deal with many products and services.
Nikkei thinks the new offering "likely will spur speculation about more investment in the field."
It quotes Tomoichiro Kubota at Matsui Securities as saying, "The trading house stocks have grown steadily since Berkshire's investment, so they're probably seen as a promising investment."
Musk: Buffett could be Treasury secretary in his spare time
After endorsing a tweet critical of Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, Elon Musk was asked yesterday who he would rather have in the position.
"Probably Buffett. He could do it using less than an hour’s time per week.
"Any highly successful investor with a long track record would do a good job – the job is essentially fund management at scale"
BUFFETT AROUND THE INTERNET
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BERKSHIRE'S TOP U.S. STOCK HOLDINGS - Apr. 7, 2023
Berkshire's top holdings of disclosed publicly-traded U.S. stocks, and BYD, by market value, based on today's closing prices.
Holdings are as of December 31, 2022 as reported in Berkshire Hathaway’s 13F filing on February 14, 2023, except for:
The full list of holdings and current market values is available from CNBC.com's Berkshire Hathaway Portfolio Tracker.
Please send any questions or comments about the newsletter to me at email@example.com. (Sorry, but we don't forward questions or comments to Buffett himself.)
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Also, Buffett's annual letters to shareholders are highly-recommended reading. There are collected here on Berkshire's website.
-- Alex Crippen, Editor, Warren Buffett Watch