Meet the 2015 Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway stocks
Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK-A) has made its quarterly filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission for its holdings as of December 31, 2014. For all practical purposes, this filing is a fresh representation of Warren Buffett’s 2015 stock holdings — with many big changes!
Well over half of Buffett’s and Berkshire Hathaway’s total equity holdings are still concentrated in just four stocks: Wells Fargo & Co., IBM, Coca-Cola Co. and American Express Co. Another issue to consider is that some of the investments in key companies are no longer held in public stocks. Berkshire Hathaway invested $3 bln in 2009 into preferred shares of Dow Chemical Co., and $5 bln for preferred shares and warrants in Bank of America in 2011.
Key changes seen for 2015 were in common shares of Deere & Co. due to an amended filing, while ConocoPhillips was eliminated. Express Scripts Holding Co. and Exxon Mobil also were both eliminated. Restaurant Brands International was listed as a new stake.
American Express Co. was again roughly the same number at more than 151 mln shares, static for years.
Coca-Cola was yet again the same stake of 400 mln shares.
IBM was higher again at 76.971 mln shares, against 70.478 mln shares last quarter and 70.173 mln shares previously.
Wells Fargo & Co. was the again same stake again at 463.458 mln shares. Buffett used to add to the stake every quarter but his stake has reached a peak after years of growing.
The remaining stocks in the full list of Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway holdings as of December 31, 2014, are as follows:
Bank of New York Mellon Corp., lower at 22.012 mln shares from 23.377 mln last quarter. This used to be static at 24.6 mln shares.
at 6.198 mln shares versus 4.95 mln shares previously. This was a new stake in 2014.
DaVita Inc. was a higher stake at 38.565 mln, up from 37.621 mln shares at the end of September. Buffett has entered into a standstill agreement not to buy more than 25% of the company, after already having increased the stake in prior quarters.
Deere & Co. was eliminated previously, but is a new holding of 17.096 mln shares. An amended filing from September clarified that it was previously less than 8 mln shares.
DirecTV was higher at 31.353 mln shares, after having been 30 mln.
General Electric Corp. was the same stake of 10.585 mln shares, but this was raised earlier in 2014 and had been telegraphed before because of the warrants.
General Motors was a larger stake again at 41 mln shares. This was 40 mln shares previously, and it had been raised in 2014.
Graham Holdings Co. is the remains of Washington Post and was the same stake at 107,575 shares. This is down from prior reports of 1.727 mln shares.
Liberty Global Plc was listed as 10.816 mln shares, slightly higher in the A Shares by about 415,000 shares, but there is the same 7.346 mln of the Class C.
MasterCard was a larger stake at 5.399 mln shares, versus 4,715,400 shares before, and up from 4,050,000 shares before that.
National Oilwell Varco was a lower stake at 5.258 mln. This had been 6.382 mln shares before and was down from 7.302 mln shares in June.
Phillips 66 was slightly increased to 6.567 mln shares, after having been shrunk to 6,202,400 shares before. This stake used to be above 27 mln shares.
Precision Castparts Corp. was a larger stake at 2.853 mln shares, up from 2.08 mln shares.
Procter & Gamble Co. remained the same stake as before, despite the Duracell buyout. This was the same position at 52.8 mln shares in the formal report, but that had been lowered
Warren Buffett may be known as the ‘Sage of Omaha’, but he appears to have been stumped by the seismic shifts in the UK grocery market. When the legendary US investor sold 245 mln Tesco shares in October he instantly swallowed a £422 mln ($678 mln) loss.
But since then the shares, under new chief executive Dave Lewis – known as Drastic Dave for his no-nonsense management style – surged by the end of January to 235.25p, already above the 229p last September before the shock announcement of a black hole in Tesco’s accounts that eventually ran to £263 mln.
The rise in the stock since October means that Buffett has missed out on a £133 mln fillip for his lack of faith in Lewis’s ability for rapid action and the support given by other investors betting on a turnaround.
in 2012 from a prior peak of 96.3 mln shares.
Suncor Energy Inc. was a larger stake at 22.35 mln shares. This was up from 18.477 mln shares before, and up from 16.458 mln shares prior to that. Suncor was just 13 mln shares in March of 2014.
Twenty-First Century Fox Inc. was a new stake at 4.747 mln shares.
Torchmark Corp. was the same stake if you account for a three-for-two stock split in July. This is now listed 6.35 mln, versus roughly 4.2 mln shares before the split.
U.S. Bancorp was left the same at 80.09 mln shares. We had seen this as one of the bank stakes that was always raised, but Buffett has now left it static again.
Viacom Inc. was higher again at 8.63 mln shares, up from 7.7 mln shares previously. The stake had been raised in 2014 and in 2013.
Visa Inc. was a larger stake 2.509 mln shares, versus 2,146,290 previously. This has been raised from 1.555 mln shares last March.
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. was the same stake as before at 60.385 mln shares, but this had been raised in recent quarters, despite a projected loss for investors in 2015.
Other stakes that remain unchanged in the portfolio include: Chicago Bridge & Iron Co., Costco Wholesale Corp., Goldman Sachs, Johnson & Johnson, Kraft Foods, Lee Enterprises, Liberty Media Corp., M&T Bank Corp., Media General Inc., Mondelez International Inc., Moody’s Corp., NOW Inc., Sanofi, United Parcel Service, USG Corp., VeriSign Inc., Verisk Analytics Inc., Verizon Communications Inc. and WABCO Holding.