Warren Buffett is arguably the world’s most famous investor, and his investment moves are closely followed. Each quarter, the company he runs, Berkshire Hathaway (), discloses its current holdings to shareholders.
Here are some of the changes Buffett and his two investment officers, Todd Combs and Ted Weschler, made during the first quarter, according to the latest 13F regulatory filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The holdings are reported as of March 31, 2023. The S&P 500 () increased about 7 percent in the first quarter of 2023.
Berkshire Hathaway’s portfolio holdings: Where Buffett & Co. are buying/adding
Capital One Financial
Berkshire established a new position in Capital One Financial () during the quarter as bank stocks suffered due to the regional bank crisis. Berkshire held just over 9.9 million shares at the end of the first quarter valued at $954 million. Capital One is a bank that specializes in credit cards and auto loans.
Berkshire established a new small position during the quarter in Vitesse Energy (). The position was worth less than $1 million at the end of March. Vitesse is an independent energy company that owns financial interests in oil and gas wells.
Berkshire added slightly to its existing position in Paramount Global (), which operates film and television studios, cable networks such as MTV and Nickelodeon, and the CBS Network. Berkshire held 93.7 million shares at the end of the first quarter, up from 93.6 million shares at the end of 2022.
Berkshire continued to increase its position in Occidental Petroleum () where it’s the largest shareholder. Berkshire holds nearly 212 million shares in the oil and gas giant, worth more than $13.2 billion at the end of the first quarter. Berkshire has increased its Occidental holdings in four of the last five quarters.
Berkshire Hathaway’s portfolio holdings: Where Buffett & Co. are selling
Berkshire cut its stake in General Motors () by 20 percent during the first quarter. The company now owns 40 million shares worth about $1.5 billion. The position was established in the first quarter of 2012, but Berkshire has sold the stock in three of the last four quarters.
Berkshire eliminated its position in Taiwan Semiconductor () during the quarter. The position had only just been established during the third-quarter of 2022. The Taiwan-based company makes advanced computer chips for a global customer base including Apple (), in which Berkshire holds a major stake. Buffett told shareholders at the company’s annual meeting that he sold the position for geopolitical reasons.
Berkshire reduced its Chevron () holdings during the first quarter, bringing its stake to about 132.4 million shares at the end of March. The company is one of Berkshire’s five largest holdings and comes with a dividend yield above 3 percent.
Berkshire reduced its position in Celanese () by just over 9 percent during the quarter. The position was established in the first quarter of 2022 and was worth about $960 million at the end of March. Celanese is a materials provider to the chemicals, paints and coatings industries.
Bank of New York Mellon and U.S. Bancorp
Berkshire sold its positions in Bank of New York Mellon () and U.S. Bancorp () and during the quarter. Both banks had been longtime holdings for Berkshire.
Berkshire reduced its stake in video game maker Activision Blizzard (), which has agreed to be acquired by Microsoft () for $95 per share in cash. Berkshire now holds 49.4 million shares, down from 52.7 million at the end of the fourth quarter. Buffett said at Berkshire’s annual meeting in April 2022 that he established the position as an arbitrage bet on the deal’s closing. Activision recently traded for around $78 per share, but the Federal Trade Commission sued to block the deal in December, arguing it would be anti-competitive. The EU approved the deal earlier today.
Berkshire cut its stake in healthcare distributor McKesson () by about 20 percent during the quarter. The position was first established in the first quarter of 2022 and was increased during the second quarter. The stake in the Irving, Texas-based company was worth about $815 million at the end of March.
Berkshire reduced its position in Ally Financial () by less than 3 percent during the quarter. The stake was established in the first half of 2022, but declined amid the regional banking crisis. Berkshire’s position was worth about $739 million at the end of the first quarter.
Amazon, Aon and RH Inc.
Berkshire slightly reduced its holdings in Amazon () and Aon (), reducing each position by a little over 1 percent. Berkshire also exited its position in RH (), formerly known as Restoration Hardware.
Top stock holdings in Buffett’s portfolio
Berkshire takes a concentrated approach with its investments, typically holding the majority of its portfolio in just a few companies. Its top holdings at the end of the first quarter accounted for about 77 percent of the portfolio’s value, and included these top five positions:
Apple () – $151.0 billion
Bank of America () – $29.5 billion
American Express () – $25.0 billion
Coca-Cola () – $24.8 billion
Chevron () – $21.6 billion
Buffett spent about $4.4 billion repurchasing Berkshire stock in the first quarter of 2023. This is an indication that he believes the shares are undervalued and continuing shareholders will benefit from the buybacks.
Buffett and Berkshire have an excellent track record in selecting investments, but be sure to research any investments thoroughly before investing yourself. Even stocks owned by legendary investors decline and you’ll need to understand the businesses you’re invested in well enough to make a buy, hold or sell decision on your own.