Warren Buffett places his $58 billion stock bets on Apple, American Express, and Goldman Sachs.
Rose Prince

2019-04-05 08:25:00 Fri ET

Warren Buffett places his $58 billion stock bets on Apple, American Express, and Goldman Sachs. Berkshire Hathaway owns $18 billion equity stakes in American Express and Goldman Sachs, and both stocks sharply trail S&P500 in recent years. Meanwhile, Berkshire Hathaway owns another $40 billion in Apple. Buffett focuses not on Apple revenue growth from quarter to quarter, but rather the broad network of hundreds of millions of iPhone and iPad users worldwide. Goldman experiences transient stock market undervaluation due to its notorious involvement in the 1MBD Malaysian bond scandal (which may result in fines up to several billions of dollars). Also, American Express executes several strategic partnerships in e-commerce payments, and continues to face fierce competition from the other major credit card bellwethers Visa and MasterCard.

Buffett views this unique collection of U.S. stocks as a set of public companies that Berkshire Hathaway partly owns in the long run. Without excessive levels of debt, these stocks earn 15%-20% steady profits on net tangible equity capital that Buffett requires to run the stock investment business. Berkshire Hathaway experiences a healthy fundamental increase in the market value of common stock investments from $170 billion to almost $173 billion from 2017-2018 to early-2019.

 


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