Warren Buffett is one of the most successful and widely followed investors of all time. The chief executive officer and largest shareholder of Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRKA) has managed to navigate financial turmoil for decades while providing timeless words of wisdom. Courtesy of a new filing, he also offers investors a peek at how the multi-billionaire is investing.
Many institutional investment managers recently filed their mandatory 13-F with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The filing is a quarterly report of equity holdings required by managers that oversee more than $100 million in qualifying assets and must be filed within 45 days of the end of each quarter. The 13-F provides a glance at what firms did in the previous quarter, but investors should keep in mind that hedging and trading strategies of each fund are still unknown.
The Oracle of Omaha made several changes to his portfolio in the fourth-quarter. Berkshire Hathaway raised its stakes slightly in Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC), Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), U.S. Bancorp (NYSE:USB), and Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM). There was also a new position in Liberty Global (NASDAQ:LBTYA) worth $262.4 million. However, the conglomerate reduced positions in Suncor Energy (NYSE:SU) and ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP), and completely sold out of DISH Network (NASDAQ:DISH) and GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK).
Berkshire Hathaway’s biggest investments include some of the most popular blue chips known to Wall Street. Here’s a look at Berkshire’s top ten holdings, according to dollar value at the end of December.
10. DaVita HealthCare Partners (NYSE:DVA)
YTD Performance: 4.7 percent
During the fourth-quarter, Berkshire raised its stake in DaVita by 5 million shares to 36.5 million shares, worth about $2.3 billion. While Buffett is typically responsible for billion-dollar positions at Berkshire, he is not likely the buyer this time. Ted Weschler, one of Buffett’s hand-selected portfolio managers, is the major bull behind Davita. Weschler joined Berkshire in early 2012, but records show that he has been investing in Davita for more than a decade.
9. DIRECTV (NASDAQ:DTV)
YTD Performance: 4.1 percent
Berkshire also held 36.5 million shares of the satellite provider at the end of the fourth quarter, worth $2.5 billion. The position was unchanged from the previous quarter.
8. U.S. Bancorp
YTD Performance: 1.0 percent
The Minnesota-based bank continues to be a favorite with Buffett as Berkshire increased its stake slightly to 79.3 million shares during the fourth-quarter, worth nearly $2.9 billion. In comparison, Berkshire held 79.1 million shares in the prior quarter.
YTD Performance: -3.7 percent
Berkshire increased its stake in the world’s largest retailer to 49.5 million shares in the fourth-quarter, up from 49.2 million shares in the third-quarter. Berkshire’s total position was worth $3.9 billion at the end of December.
6. Exxon Mobil
YTD Performance: -7.0 percent
Exxon Mobil, the world’s largest publicly traded oil company, is a relatively new position for Berkshire, but already one of its biggest. Berkshire held 41.1 million shares at the end of the fourth-quarter, up from 40.1 million shares in the prior quarter. The total position was worth $4.2 billion at the end of December.
5. Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG)
YTD Performance: -2.5 percent
During the fourth-quarter, Berkshire kept its stake in Procter & Gamble unchanged at 52.8 million shares, worth $4.3 billon. While shares finished 2013 near 52-week highs, they are in the red this year amid emerging-market concerns.
4. International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM)
YTD Performance: -2.1 percent
The information technology company is one of the most influential blue chips in the market, and one of Buffett’s biggest holdings. Berkshire held 68.1 million shares of the company at the end of the fourth-quarter, worth $13.8 billion.
3. American Express (NYSE:AXP)
YTD Performance: -1.9 percent
Berkshire held 151.6 million shares of the credit card giant at the end of the fourth-quarter, unchanged from the previous quarter and worth about $13.8 billion.
2. Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO)
YTD Performance: -5.8 percent
Coca-Cola is known as one of Buffett’s favorite stocks. In fact, Buffett is on record saying he will never sell his shares in the world renowned beverage company. At the end of the fourth-quarter, Berkshire held 400 million shares, worth $16.5 billion.
1. Wells Fargo
YTD Performance: 1.6 percent
The nation’s most profitable bank is also Buffett’s top holding. Berkshire held 463.5 million shares of Wells Fargo at the end of the fourth-quarter, up slightly from the previous quarter. At the end of December, the total position was worth $21 billion.
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