Omaha (AP) – Warren Buffett’s investment company Berkshire Hathaway has increasingly relied on share buybacks during the Corona crisis. In the three months to the end of September, the conglomerate said it had spent around $ 9.0 billion (EUR 7.6 billion) on Saturday to buy back its own shares.
In the third quarter alone, more was spent on this type of stock price maintenance than ever in a full calendar year. Throughout the year, the amount already amounts to around $ 16 billion.
Many other corporations have limited their share buybacks to keep the money together during the pandemic. But Buffett sat down with Berkshire Hathaway most recently with a cash of $ 145.7 billion. Therefore, cash holdings only decreased slightly compared to the prior quarter. The 90-year-old star investor would actually rather spend the money on investments; for a long time it largely refused to buy back shares to maintain prices. But Buffett has been struggling to find suitable acquisition targets for some time.
Berkshire Hathaway’s daily business continues to suffer from the Corona crisis. Operating profit fell 32 percent year-over-year to $ 5.5 billion, and the major insurance company took losses. The net result, however, benefited heavily from the stock market rally and increased from $ 16.5 billion to $ 30.1 billion. Buffett himself, however, always advises not to pay much attention to this figure. Since unrealized investment gains and losses are shown here, there are sharp fluctuations that say little about the actual course of business.
Berkshire Hathaway owns about 90 companies, plus several blocks of shares in large listed corporations such as Coca-Cola, Wells Fargo, and Apple; The iPhone group in particular has become one of Buffett’s favorites in recent years. The investment legend, known as the “Oracle of Omaha” for its good smell of lucrative investments, has led the conglomerate for more than 50 years. “Forbes” recently estimated Buffett’s personal wealth at around $ 79 billion. According to the American magazine, he is the fourth richest person in the world.