Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway has extended its rebound from the early stages of the pandemic, with quarterly operating profits rising by 18 per cent to $6.47 billion compared to $5.48 billion in the year-earlier period.
This is despite the company hoarding cash and cutting back on some stock holdings.
During the third quarter, Berkshire Hathaway repurchased $7.6 billion of its own stock.
The share repurchases boosted total buybacks to $20.2bn this year, and close to $45bn since the end of 2019.
Consequently, the company ended September with $149.2bn of cash and equivalents, and sold about $2bn more stock than it bought in the quarter.
The increase in cash reflects its need to mitigate rising stock prices, with acquisitions of whole companies now appearing too expensive.
Meanwhile, net income declined 66 per cent to $10.3 billion, or $6,882 per Class A share, from $30.1 billion.
The decrease in net income highlighted lower unrealised gains on Berkshire Hathaway’s common stock holdings including Apple and Bank of America.