Investors Will Soon Find Out a Lot About Warren Buffett's Portfolio

Warren Buffett has made quite a name for himself and his company Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A 0.62%) (BRK.B 0.80%) by regularly outperforming the market over several decades. The Oracle of Omaha is viewed by many as one of the greatest investors of all time and is still the CEO of Berkshire at the age of 91. Buffett is considered such a legend that the investing community follows just about every stock that Berkshire buys and sells to create its $355 billion equities portfolio.

Investors can glean this information from Berkshire’s 13F document, which it must file with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) 45 days after the end of each quarter. That means the 13F for the second quarter will likely be made public on Aug. 14 or Aug. 15 (it can vary). Let’s take a look at what investors might soon find out.

What to expect from Berkshire’s 13F report

The 13F filing will show us what stocks Buffett and Berkshire bought and sold in the three months ranging from April 1 to June 30. The 13F will not tell us when Berkshire bought or sold shares in the quarter, but it will divulge how many shares Berkshire bought and for how much.

Berkshire released its second-quarter earnings report last week. The company reported a net loss of nearly $30 million, largely due to investment losses in the quarter because stocks did not fare well. This number tends to ebb and flow each quarter, so it shouldn’t be too much of a concern for investors. But Berkshire also divulged some information about stocks it bought and sold in Q2. 

Stock Category Cost Basis Q1 2022 Cost Basis Q2 2022
Banks, insurance, and finance $36.47 billion $36.84 billion
Consumer products $40.93 billion $41.79 billion
Commercial, industrial, and other $68.13 billion $71.1 billion
Total $145.54 billion  $149.72 billion

Source: Berkshire Hathaway financial documents.

As you can see, Buffett and Berkshire were net buyers of stocks in the second quarter. The total cost basis in Q2 rose by nearly $4.2 billion, most of which came from purchases in commercial, industrial, and other stocks. Berkshire’s cash flow statement shows that the conglomerate purchased nearly $6.2 billion of equities in the second quarter and also sold about $2.3 billion of stocks. Berkshire also repurchased about $1 billion of its own stock in the quarter. 

These moves are ultimately pretty minor when you consider that Buffett purchased more than $51 billion of stocks in the first quarter of the year. Stocks drifted even lower in the second quarter of the year than they did in the first quarter, so there were opportunities out there, but it looks like Berkshire took a breather as the economic outlook got murkier and the economy tipped into an unofficial recession. Berkshire likes to keep plenty of cash in its portfolio, so it is well prepared for a range of economic and market scenarios.

What did Buffett and Berkshire buy?

We won’t know exactly what Buffett and Berkshire bought and sold until the report comes out, so I’m not going to spend too much time guessing. But Buffett has been buying a huge amount of oil stocks this year, so that theme could continue. I’ll also be interested to see if Buffett bought any more financials in the second quarter after purchasing Citigroup and Ally Financial in the first quarter, but the cost basis of financials only went up $400 million in Q2, so it doesn’t seem like there were any big moves on that front. There are always some fun surprises in the 13F, so Buffettologists will want to be paying close attention when Berkshire’s 13F drops sometime next week.

Ally is an advertising partner of The Ascent, a Motley Fool company. Citigroup is an advertising partner of The Ascent, a Motley Fool company. Bram Berkowitz has positions in Citigroup and has the following options: long January 2024 $80 calls on Citigroup. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Berkshire Hathaway (B shares). The Motley Fool recommends the following options: long January 2023 $200 calls on Berkshire Hathaway (B shares), short January 2023 $200 puts on Berkshire Hathaway (B shares), and short January 2023 $265 calls on Berkshire Hathaway (B shares). The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.