Gustavo Ballvé on February 28th, 2010
Corporate Governance, Corporate Strategy, Food for thought, Home, Industries, Insurance, Investment Themes, Portfolio Management, Risk management

God has spoken, go out and read it. The core is dedicated to welcoming and explaining BRK to its new shareholders acquired through BNSF, so no big news. Buffett complains more about the media and investments analysts, on how they distort things, causing losses to the less diligent and recommends that everybody form their own knowledge base and opinion. Hope he lives to see that happening, but we sincerely doubt it.

The numbers that matter: US$ 131Bi in equity, US$ 62Bi in float => ~ US$ 193Bi in “capital”. Book value grew 20%. Float grew 5.8% (from US$ 58.5 to US$ 62Bi). All insurance businesses operated with underwriting profit again. Cash = US$ 30Bi (US$8Bi used in Q1 to pay part of the BNSF deal). Operational assets = US$ 30Bi but generated only US$ 1.1Bi in net profits, which shows insurance/investments did the heavy lifting. The operating units will hopefully make up their fair share of contribution in a recovery.

Bottom line: investors are still paying about capital value at current prices. It has the best governance we ever saw. If they continue to grow float, have underwriting profits and make good investments, it’s a steal. Never mind the recovery.

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