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Apple stock hits record high after Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway increases stake

06 May, 2018, 03:27 | Author: Kristi Dunn
  • Taking care of business - BH style

USA billionaire investor Warren Buffett said Saturday that the world depends on the United States and China for progress, dismissing concerns that the two countries' trade tensions could potentially escalate into a trade war.

"If you look at Apple, I think it earns nearly twice as much as the second most profitable company in the United States", he said.

"It is an unbelievable company", declared Buffett.

Just over 60 per cent of Apple analysts rate the stock a buy and the rest have hold recommendations.

Mr. Buffett's commitment to Apple over the past two years has surprised many, given his historical aversion to companies associated with the technology sector.

During the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting in Omaha exclusively live streamed on Yahoo Finance on Saturday, Buffett opened with an anecdote about purchasing a stock with a little more than $100 back in 1942.

Buffett said Wells Fargo creating millions of fake accounts was a "cardinal sin" by Berkshire's standards. The latest 75 million shares are further addition to its now existing stock.

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, one of the conglomerate's first subsidiaries to carry its moniker, is a franchise brokerage business with close to 50,000 agents in the U.S. Buffett said Berkshire's real estate business's highest average home sale transaction is $600,000, and most sales are in the $250,000 range.

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"It gets me first place in the queue, I think when people go to so much effort it shows Warren how important he is for us", Robertson said.

At the end of 2017, Berkshire was sitting on roughly $116 billion in cash that can be used to acquire other companies.

Besides investments, Berkshire owns more than 90 subsidiaries in a variety of industries, including insurance, utilities, railroads, and manufacturing.

If Berkshire were to purchase Microsoft shares, and the company were to make a big announcement shortly after that drove the stock price up, it could raise insider trading suspicions, Buffett said.

Berkshire Hathaway owns 10 percent of Wells Fargo's stock, and Buffett reiterated his support for the bank Saturday despite its recent scandals.

When asked about whether Buffett's heirs can continue Berkshire's record of throwing lifelines to stressed firms in exchange for good returns, Buffett said that as of date, some of Berkshire's funds are arranged by portfolios managers Ted Weschler and Todd Combs, not by him.

Against this backdrop, Apple reported a reasonable quarter and the stock now stands about $20 per share short of giving it a trillion dollar market capitalisation. In Friday trading, the Class A shares closed at$292,600, and the Class B shares at $195.64.



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