FRI, SEP 22, 2023
Berkshire continues to sell HP shares, increasing cut to 8.5%
It wasn't a one-off. For a second consecutive week, Berkshire Hathaway has reduced its stake in HP.
In a filing late today, Buffett's company says it sold 4.8 million shares for $129.2 million over the past three days.
That's an average price of $26.98, down from last week's $28.81, when it sold 5.5 million shares for $158.5 million.
In total, Berkshire has cut its HP holdings by 10.3 million shares, an 8.5% reduction, bringing its stake down to 11.2% from 12.1% of the computer and printer maker's outstanding shares.
Even after the sales, Berkshire is still HP's largest shareholder, ahead of the Vanguard Group's 104.2 million shares.
At today's closing price of $26.77, Berkshire's remaining 110.7 million HP shares have a market value of almost $3 billion.
HP shares are down 21.0% from their 52-week intraday high of $33.90 in mid-July, although they have lost just 0.4% year-to-date, thanks to a rally from March through June.
The stock has been pressured more recently by disappointing revenues that were revealed late last month.
Berkshire shares retreat after two more record highs
Berkshire Hathaway's stock prices both closed at record highs on Monday and Tuesday of this week but have retreated from those peaks.
Today the Class A shares closed at $546,215, down 3.0% from Tuesday's closing high of $563,070.
They are down 3.6% from the new intraday high of $566,570, also set on Tuesday.
The more widely held Class B shares, which are part of the benchmark S&P 500 stock index, closed today at $360.33. That's down 2.8% from Tuesday's closing high of $370.48 and 3.5% lower than the same day's intraday high of $373.34.
So far this year, Berkshire is outperforming the S&P by about four percentage points.
BNSF settles fingerprint privacy lawsuit
BNSF, Berkshire Hathaway's freight rail subsidiary, is settling a class action lawsuit brought by truck drivers who accused the company of illegally collecting their fingerprints at its facilities in Illinois.
Reuters reports the deal follows a judge's ruling in June that upheld a jury's liability finding that Berkshire had violated a strict state law protecting the privacy of biometric data but also threw out $228 million in damages awarded to the plaintiffs.
Reuters file photo (2014)|Rick Wilking
BNSF decided to settle rather than have a jury decide on a new damage award at a second trial that was scheduled to begin early next month.
A judge will need to approve the terms of the agreement, which have not been released publicly.
Buffett loses 'untouched' $5 bill in football bet with Chevron's CEO
Colorado Buffaloes quarterback Shedeur Sanders is pursued by Nebraska Cornhuskers during first quarter of game Colorado won by a score of 36-14 on September 9, 2023. Photo: Ron Chenoy | USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Connect
In an email to Serwer, Buffett wrote that before the season began, he put $5 on the Cornhuskers even though he knows Wirth is "far smarter than I am in finding oil and gas and who knows what other mental endeavors."
"After Nebraska lost, I sent my $5 by Federal Express. He won fair and square. He had no inside knowledge about Colorado. Fortunately, I had $5 in my wallet that had been untouched for decades.
"I have $5 in my budget for football in 2024. There's no fool like an old fool."
Wirth says he's happy Colorado's football team is doing so well, and that Berkshire is a Chevron shareholder. "Finding a FedEx package from Warren on my desk is just a little icing on the cake."
BUFFETT AROUND THE INTERNET
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HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE ARCHIVE
Buffett: We don’t own too many Apple shares (2023)
Warren Buffett dismisses criticism that Berkshire’s portfolio is dominated by its Apple shares, arguing the position should be evaluated in the broader context of both the stocks and companies it owns.
BERKSHIRE'S TOP U.S. STOCK HOLDINGS - Sep. 22, 2023
Berkshire's top holdings of disclosed publicly-traded stocks in the U.S., Japan, and Hong Kong, by market value, based on today's closing prices.
Holdings are as of June 30, 2023 as reported in Berkshire Hathaway’s 13F filing on August 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
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