Energy Business

RBC Not Impressed That Warren Buffett Bought Even More Phillips 66 Stock

When investors learn that Warren Buffett just bought more of a company’s stock, the interest often picks up in that stock. Sometimes even analysts on Wall Street will give those “Buffett stocks” more coverage attention. It turns out that in the case of Phillips 66 (NYSE: PSX), RBC Capital Markets doesn’t really care that Warren Buffett bought even more shares of the refining giant in recent days.

RBC issued a light report on Monday on Phillips 66 and many other stocks. The firm has only a Sector Perform rating here, but the analyst trimmed the Phillips 66 price target down to $77 from $79. This might not be much of a backing off of estimates on the surface, but the firm’s Sector Perform rating is the same as a Hold rating at other firms.

Phillips 66 had its earnings report last week, with earnings at $1.31 per share. That was six cents ahead of the $1.25 consensus estimate, but it was still handily under the $1.63 per share report from a year ago.

Filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) now show that Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK-A) bought Phillips 66 shares yet again from the dates of January 27 to January 29. That was a total of 2,541,346 shares at a volume-average-weighted price of $77.94. All in all, Buffett spent just over $198 million buying Phillips 66 shares on those days. The actual purchases took place at prices of $75.83 to $79.50.

We also have a breakdown of how Berkshire Hathaway has divvied these 72.293 million shares out among its operating units:

  • National Indemnity Co. (54,895,310)
  • National Fire & Marine Insurance Co. (1,163,000)
  • National Liability & Fire Insurance Co. (1,266,000)
  • Berkshire Hathaway Assurance Corp. (1,558,000)
  • Berkshire Hathaway Homestate Insurance Co. (782,000)
  • Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance Co. (1,314,000)
  • Columbia Insurance Company (5,213,000)
  • FlightSafety International Inc. Retirement Income Plan (350,000)
  • Fruit of the Loom Pension Trust (921,300)
  • GEICO Corporation Pension Plan Trust (2,499,700)
  • Johns Manville Corporation Master Pension Trust (2,187,000)
  • General Re Corp. Employee Retirement Trust (144,000)

As Berkshire Hathaway is now deemed to be the universal combined owner of more than 10% of Phillips 66 shares, the company now has to file reports with the SEC any time it makes purchases or sales. Its holdings were 11.53% of the company even at September 30, 2015, and that was already worth $4.72 billion.

RBC may not have any extra impression made from Buffett’s stake, but other analysts are still more positive here. Phillips 66 was last seen down 0.5% at $79.71, with a consensus analyst price target of $95.25 and a 52-week range of $69.79 to $94.12.