Billionaire investor Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc.'s (BRKa: Quote, BRKb) U.S. equity portfolio was worth $74.32 billion at the end of the June 2012, down from $75.30 billion at the end of March 2012, a regulatory filing showed Tuesday.
As per a regulatory requirement, companies that control an investment portfolio of more than $100 million are required to report its U.S. stock holdings 45 days after the end of each quarter.
According to the quarterly holdings statement filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Berkshire's new portfolio managers, Todd Combs and Ted Weschler, are seen to have slashed holdings in Procter & Gamble Co. (PG: Quote), Kraft Foods, Inc. (KFT) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ: Quote) during the second quarter. It also completely sold off its position in chipmaker Intel Corp. (INTC: Quote).
The increasing pressure from activist investor Bill Ackman on P&G and the splitting of its businesses at Kraft seems to have been the reason for the reduction in stake.
The Omaha, Nebraska-based company also reduced its stake in Ingersoll-Rand Plc (IR: Quote), General Electric Co. (GE: Quote), United Parcel Service, Inc. (UPS: Quote), Visa, Inc. (V: Quote), CVS Caremark Corp. (CVS: Quote), Verisk Analytics, Inc. (VRSK: Quote), Dollar General Corp. (DG: Quote), and US Bancorp (USB: Quote), the filing shows.
At the same time, the filing revealed Berkshire's new investments in the oil sector with stakes in National Oil Well Varco (NOV: Quote) and Phillips 66 (PSX: Quote), which was spun-off from ConocoPhilips (COP: Quote), in which it slashed stake. Another addition was in newspaper publisher Lee Enterprises, Inc. (LEE: Quote).
It also boosted positions in technology giant International Business Machines Corp. (IBM: Quote), dialysis centers operator DaVita Inc. (DVA: Quote), Bank of New York Mellon Corp. (BK: Quote), and banking giant Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC: Quote), a Buffet favorite.
Additionally, stake was increased in John Malone-controlled Liberty Media Corp. (LMCA: Quote), DirecTV, Inc. (DTV: Quote) and Paramount studios owner Viacom, Inc. (VIA: Quote).
Meanwhile, as Berkshire has been granted permission by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to keep some holdings information confidential for now, some of the changes in holdings might not have been revealed by the company in the filing.
Buffet's stock picks are closely watched by money managers and other investors as an indicator of market movements in the future.
Berkshire's Class A shares closed Tuesday's regular trading session at $127,375, down $5.00. The company's Class B shares closed at $84.94, down $0.05 on a volume of 2.55 million shares.
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by RTT Staff Writer
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