Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp. (NYSE: BNI) does not have a new shareholder. But Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK-A) did increase the size of the stake held in Burlington Northern. In another unusual Buffett style move, this was not just a normal "let’s just buy some more of this one."
Warren Buffett and friends exercised options contracts on the vestingand expiration date of December 11 at $75.45 for some 2,217,500shares. Buffett now holds 70,089,029 shares, or a stake of 20.47% inBurlington Northern.
This is via the National Indemnity Company subsidiary of BerkshireHathaway. As reported on a Form 4 filed December 5, the "NICO"unit wrote a put option on December 3, pursuant to which it isobligated to buy 2,325,000 shares of BNI Common Stock from Citibank,N.A. for an exercise price of $75.00 per share, if Citibank exercisesthe put option.
Shares closed up 0.2% today at $71.53. The 52-week trading range is $68.31 to $114.58.
- Buffett did another synthetic trade like this in BNI, which he was later "put" in the shares.
- Full Buffett Holdings as of his last report
Jon C. Ogg
December 15, 2008