Morningstar Rating

Stock Research and Analysis

by Greggory Warren, CFA

Bulls Say

Book value per share, which is the best proxy for measuring changes in Berkshire's intrinsic value, increased at a 19.4% CAGR during 1965-2014, compared with a 9.9% total return for the S&P 500 TR Index.
Berkshire's long-term record of expanding its book value per share has been fairly consistent, with the company reporting annual declines in just two calendar years during the last fifty: 2001 and 2008.
At the end of the second quarter of 2015, Berkshire had $85.1 billion in float from its insurance operations. The cost of float has been negative for much of the last decade. Read more 

Bears Say

Given the current size and scale of its operations, the biggest hurdle facing Berkshire will be the need to consistently find deals that not only add value but are large enough to be meaningful.
The other big issue facing the firm is the longevity of chairman and CEO Warren Buffett, who turned 85 this year, and managing partner Charlie Munger, who is 91.
Berkshire's insurance operations face competitive and highly cyclical markets that occasionally produce large losses. It also has highly uncertain liabilities on its books that could cost more than the firm has stated and/or reserved. Read more 


Warren Buffett has been chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway since 1970. Charlie Munger has served as vice chairman since 1978. Berkshire has two classes of common stock, with Class B shares holding 1/1,500th of the economic rights of Class A shares   Read more 


Berkshire Hathaway is a holding company with a wide array of subsidiaries engaged in a number of diverse activities. The firm's core business segment is insurance, run primarily   Read more 

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