Warren Buffett addresses shareholders once a year, every year, and his addresses have been some of the most-anticipated events of the year in the world of finance. Today his annual letter arrives, and it’s been a source of inspiration for many. Thousands of people travel to Nebraska every spring to hear the Sage of Omaha expound on his letter and explain the thinking behind his decisions.
One of the things shareholders will be looking for today in Warren Buffett’s letter is a sign of any new acquisitions on the horizon. Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) (NYSE:BRK.B) has grown into a multi-billion dollar empire through the years through countless acquisitions. His most recent acquisition was H.J. Heinz Company (NYSE:HNZ) in February, but before that, the last major deal he made was in 2010 when he acquired Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp. There have been smaller deals since then, but The Wall Street Journal reports that there has been no deal that added up to billions of dollars.
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While the investment world is unpredictable at best, there is one thing you can count on. Warren Buffett will always be making billion dollar offers for companies he likes. CNBC reports that he had $48 billion in cash just lying around, waiting for the next company to interest Buffett and be acquired by him. The problem is he just hasn’t found a company he likes.
Buffett has been taking part in discussions to acquire companies, like NYSE Euronext (NYSE:NYX), although he walked away from that deal because they couldn’t agree on a price. The company then made a deal with IntercontinentalExchange Inc (NYSE:ICE) instead. So even though Buffett has billions of dollars, he knows how to spot a deal, and he won’t put the money down for any company he doesn’t believe is fairly priced.
In this year’s letter, Warren Buffett will, of course, address this past year’s performance of Berkshare Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) (NYSE:BRK.B). The company’s Class A shares rose approximately 27 percent in the past year, hitting a record high recently.
In addition, Warren Buffett is expected to explain a change to how Berkshare Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) (NYSE:BRK.B)’s annual shareholder meeting is formatted. More than 30,000 people attend the meeting every spring. Last year he, his business partner Charlie Munger, and three Wall Street analysts took questions from a panel of journalists. The Wall Street Journalist reports that one of the other two spots could be taken by an industrial business analyst. There’s no word on who the third panelist might be, although some believe it could be someone who doesn’t think much of Berkshire, if you can imagine that.