Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (BRKB) bought beaten-down Activision Blizzard (ATVI) and Nu Holdings (NU) for the first time in the fourth quarter of 2021, while exiting Teva Pharmaceuticals (TEVA) and further souring on drug and payment stocks.
In Q4, the Berkshire chief picked up nearly 15 million shares of Activision Blizzard worth nearly $1 billion, according to a 13F filing tracked by whalewisdom.com. ATVI stock plunged in November amid an earnings miss. But shares surged in January after Microsoft (MSFT) agreed to buy the troubled video game company in a blockbuster $68.7 billion deal.
The conglomerate also bought 107 million shares of Nu, a Brazil-based digital bank holding company, worth more than $1 billion. Nu Holdings isn’t Buffett’s first bet on Brazilian financial tech companies — he bought StoneCo (STNE) previously.
Last quarter, Berkshire grew stakes in Liberty Sirius (LSXMA) and Chevron (CVX) by a third or more, as well as RH (RH) and Floor & Decor (FND) by 1%-3%. Oil prices have rocketed this year amid rising geopolitical tensions.
On the flip side, Berkshire dumped Teva stock and Sirius XM (SIRI) entirely. In Q4, Buffett further slashed Bristol Myers Squibb (BMY), AbbVie (ABBV), Visa (V) and Mastercard (MA) after reducing those positions in the prior quarter.
Huge, closely watched stakes in Bank of America (BAC) and Apple (AAPL) went unchanged. Buffett also kept Amazon (AMZN) steady. Berkshire Hathaway’s second largest stock holding by number of shares is Apple, with 887.1 million shares held. Bank of America stock is No. 1, with more than 1 billion shares held.
The regulatory 13F filing detailed changes to Warren Buffett’s Dow stocks-heavy portfolio last quarter. The investing legend has a long-term track record of beating the market with his picks.
On Feb. 21, Berkshire Hathaway reports for Q4 2021, according to FactSet. The earnings report is likely to show whether Berkshire remained a net seller of stocks, after four straight quarters of selling.
Warren Buffett Stock Moves
Shares of Activision Blizzard edged up 0.5% on the stock market today, which isn’t surprising given the Microsoft all-cash takeover deal. Nu stock jumped 6.6%. Teva shares fell 1.1%.
When Berkshire Hathaway takes a new position, that stock tends to pop. Marked by low turnover and high conviction, Berkshire Hathaway’s stock portfolio is a popular model in the investment community.
Of course, not all “Warren Buffett stocks” are actually the Berkshire chief’s picks. Some of Berkshire Hathaway’s portfolio is handled by money managers Ted Weschler and Todd Combs.
Buffett’s stock portfolio remains extremely concentrated. At the end of Q4 2021, the top five stocks represented nearly 80% of the total portfolio. They included: Apple (AAPL) ($157.5 billion) and Bank of America (BAC) ($44.9 billion). Also, American Express (AXP) ($24.8 billion), Coca-Cola (KO) ($23.7 billion), and Kraft Heinz (KO) (11.7 billion).
Meanwhile, Berkshire Hathaway bought back $20.2 billion in BRKB stock over the first three quarters of 2021. It repurchased a record $27.4 billion of its own shares in 2020.
IBD generally uses a different stock-picking strategy than Buffett does, but some Warren Buffett stocks are found on the IBD 50 list of top growth stocks. IBD has a screen of stocks that meet the Buffett investment strategy.
Find Aparna Narayanan on Twitter at @IBD_Aparna.
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