Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Berkshire Hathaway 4th Quarter 2009 13F-HR

Based upon the most recent 13F-HR filing released yesterday, Berkshire Hathaway (BRKa) reduced its holdings in the following stocks:

Johnson & Johnson - reduced 26%, from 36.9 to 27.1 million shares
(even with this sale, remains a top ten position worth over $ 1.7 billion)
ConocoPhillips - reduced 34%, from 57.4 to 37.7 million shares
(remains a top ten position worth over $ 1.8 billion)
Procter & Gamble - reduced by 9%, from 96.3 to 87.5 million shares
(after sale, PG remains the 4th largest position worth $ 5.5 billion)
Exxon - reduced 67%, from 1.3 million to 422 thousand shares
Carmax - reduced 11%, from 9 to 8 million shares
Ingersol Rand - reduced 27%, from 7.8 to 5.6 million shares
Gannett - reduced 36%, from 3.4 to 2.2 million shares
Suntrust - reduced 22%, from 3.1 to 2.4 million shares
United Health - reduced 65%, from 3.4 to 1.2 million shares

Wellpoint - reduced 60%, from 3.4 to 1.3 million shares

Also, as expected he sold out of his other railroad holdings. In total, Buffett sold approximately $ 2 billion worth of stock.

Some of these stocks, specifically United Health (UNH) and ConocoPhillips (COP) were sold at fairly significant losses. Procter & Gamble (PG) was sold but remains a large position. In the 4Q of 2008 Buffett sold approximately half his stake in Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) to help finance the purchase of Goldman Sachs (GS). After that, he began rebuilding that position. So it is plausible that some of these sales have occurred to help with the purchase of by far the largest acquisition in Berkshire Hathaway's history: Burlington Northern Santa Fe. Who knows.

While Buffett did more selling than buying, he continued to add to his already huge stake in Wells Fargo (WFC). It now makes up 17% of the Berkshire Hathway equity portfolio, 2nd biggest position after Coca-Cola (KO). The additional purchases of shares in WFC was the biggest change on a dollar basis. Here is a list of all the increases:

Wal-Mart Stores - increased 3.2%, from 37.8 to 39.0 million shares
Wells Fargo - increased 2.1%, from 313.4 to 320.1 million shares
Becton Dickinson - increased 25%, from 1.2 to 1.5 million shares
Iron Mountain - Increased 107%, from 3.4 to 7.0 million shares
Republic Services - increased 128%, from 3.6 to 8.3 million shares


Value of all purchases was less than $ 500 million.

Iron Mountain (IRM) has fallen below the lowest prices that were available in the 4th quarter so those new shares are underwater for now. The current Berkshire Hathway's equity portfolio is worth approximately $ 50 billion excluding the preferred shares he holds in the likes of General Electric (GE), Goldman Sachs (GS), and Mars-Wrigley etc.

Adam

Long positions in BRKb, KO, WFC, PG, COP, GE, and JNJ.
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