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What Buffett bought in 1Q18

Greggory Warren, CFA  |  17 May 2018Text size  Decrease  Increase  |  
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There were few big surprises in wide-moat-rated Berkshire Hathaway's latest 13-F filing -a quarterly Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) requirement for institutional investment managers.

Warren Buffett

Having already telegraphed a number of its movements in mid-February, including the sale of 35 million shares of Phillips 66 common stock for US$3.3 billion in a private transaction with the oil and gas company. CEO Warren Buffett also alluded recently to the purchase of 74.2 million additional shares of Apple for an estimated US$12.5 billion. This trade lifted the tech giant to more than one-fifth of Berkshire's equity portfolio, noting that the insurer eliminated its remaining stake in IBM as well - for an estimated US$314 million.

Berkshire also made large additions to existing stakes in agricultural products firm Monsanto and Teva pharmaceuticals. Increasing its holdings in the former by more than 60 per cent, Berkshire acquired an additional 7.3 million shares for an estimated $850 million, and picked up 21.7 million more shares of the generic drug manufacturer for an estimated $390 million, doubling its position.

Other purchases during the quarter included 3.7 million shares of US Bancorp, 1.4 million shares of Bank of New York Mellon, and 0.5 million shares of Delta Air Line - for an estimated US$197 million, US$73 million and US$27 million, respectively.

While we knew about Berkshire's trimming of its Wells Fargo stake - selling 1.7 million shares for an estimated $97 million during the period - to keep its holdings below 10 per cent of the bank's total outstanding shares, we were surprised to see the insurer sell more than 80 per cent of its position in Verisk Analytics for an estimated $128 million, while also eliminating its remaining stake in Graham Holdings for an estimated $62 million.

As for the remaining sales, Berkshire sold 0.3 million shares of Charter Communications, 1.9 million shares of Liberty Global PLC, 0.5 million shares of United Continental, and 0.2 million shares of Sanofi-Aventis, for an estimated US$86 million, US$66 million, US$35 million and US$7 million, respectively.

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Greggory Warren is a US-based senior stock analyst with Morningstar.

© 2018 Morningstar, Inc. All rights reserved. Neither Morningstar, its affiliates, nor the content providers guarantee the data or content contained herein to be accurate, complete or timely nor will they have any liability for its use or distribution. This information is to be used for personal, non-commercial purposes only. No reproduction is permitted without the prior written consent of Morningstar. Any general advice or 'class service' have been prepared by Morningstar Australasia Pty Ltd (ABN: 95 090 665 544, AFSL: 240892), or its Authorised Representatives, and/or Morningstar Research Ltd, subsidiaries of Morningstar, Inc, without reference to your objectives, financial situation or needs. Please refer to our Financial Services Guide (FSG) for more information at www.morningstar.com.au/s/fsg.pdf. Our publications, ratings and products should be viewed as an additional investment resource, not as your sole source of information. Past performance does not necessarily indicate a financial product's future performance. To obtain advice tailored to your situation, contact a licensed financial adviser. Some material is copyright and published under licence from ASX Operations Pty Ltd ACN 004 523 782 ("ASXO"). The article is current as at date of publication.

 

Greggory Warren, CFA, is a senior stock analyst with Morningstar.

© 2020 Morningstar, Inc. All rights reserved. Neither Morningstar, its affiliates, nor the content providers guarantee the data or content contained herein to be accurate, complete or timely nor will they have any liability for its use or distribution. This information is to be used for personal, non-commercial purposes only. No reproduction is permitted without the prior written consent of Morningstar. Any general advice or 'class service' have been prepared by Morningstar Australasia Pty Ltd (ABN: 95 090 665 544, AFSL: 240892), or its Authorised Representatives, and/or Morningstar Research Ltd, subsidiaries of Morningstar, Inc, without reference to your objectives, financial situation or needs. Please refer to our Financial Services Guide (FSG) for more information at www.morningstar.com.au/s/fsg.pdf. Our publications, ratings and products should be viewed as an additional investment resource, not as your sole source of information. Past performance does not necessarily indicate a financial product's future performance. To obtain advice tailored to your situation, contact a licensed financial adviser. Some material is copyright and published under licence from ASX Operations Pty Ltd ACN 004 523 782. The article is current as at date of publication.

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