The world’s most famous – and most closely watched – investor is apparently feeling good about big home building companies and he’s put his money where his mouth is with new major financial commitments.
There isn’t an individual investor more closely followed by those who play the stock market and just anyone looking for broader business trends than Warren Buffett, the long-time CEO of Berkshire Hathaway. The big conglomerate, which owns many entire companies like Dairy Queen, GEICO, and Fruit of the Loom, also has major stakes in such well-known corporations as Apple and Coca-Cola.
So the recent news that Buffet has made significant investments in several big national home building companies has to be viewed favorably by those in the industry looking for signs that the housing market may have bottomed out and is poised to start to pick up again.
In its filings to the Securities and Exchange Commission, Berkshire reported it had made new investments in three of the nation’s biggest home builders: D.R. Horton, NVT, and Lennar. In total the investment amounted to about $814 million, a relatively small dollar amount for a company sitting on $100 billion in cash but it does seem to be positive news for the business. The holdings all amount to less than 3% in each company so are generally not perceived as indicative of any potential acquisition, which is not usually Berkshire’s operating strategy.
Berkshire does already have a number of holdings in the housing and home-related industries including Clayton Homes, Johns Manville, Benjamin Moore, and four furniture retailers.
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