Significant Changes in Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway Holdings

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Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK-A) has released its public equity holdings as of September 30, 2014. Warren Buffett’s portfolio has recently undergone some radical changes on the surface, some of which are good and some of which look mixed. Also, some of the substantial change has taken place since the end of the last reporting period and we have made an effort to capture those changes.

Warren Buffett and his team of portfolio managers listed some $107.785 billion in the formal filing, but the full list would be higher considering other private and/or international stakes. The most recent earnings report for September 30 had indicated that equity securities held were $116.432 billion, and that did not include the $11.83 billion Heinz investment.

We also knew ahead of time and going into this report that approximately 58% of the total value of the Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK-B) equity holdings was still concentrated in just four stocks – Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) at $25.1 billion; International Business Machines Corporation (NYSE: IBM) at $13.4 billion; and The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) at $17.1 billion; and American Express Company (NYSE: AXP) at $13.3 billion.

That was the same percentage in June, but the concentration was just 56% in the March holdings.

One issue to consider as well is that some of the investments in key companies are no longer held in public stocks. Berkshire Hathaway invested $3 billion in 2009 into preferred shares of Dow Chemical Co. (NYSE: DOW), and it invested $5 billion for Preferred shares and warrants in Bank of America Corp. (NYSE: BAC) in 2011.

A newer stake in 2014 was Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), but that remained static. Express Scripts Holding Co. (NASDAQ: ESRX) was a new stake in the portfolio, while Deere & Co. (NYSE: DE) was eliminated from the portfolio.

The full list of Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway stock holdings as of September 30, 2014, is as follows: