Russo Still Likes Berkshire, Tobacco, Mastercard, Wells Fargo

Thomas Russo of Gardner Russo & Gardner sits atop a $6 billion stock portfolio and has added major names.

Russo Still Likes Berkshire, Tobacco, Mastercard, Wells Fargo

Russo Traditional holdings

The portfolio’s biggest love affair is with its long time sweetheart Nestle SA (VTX:NESN), which accounts for 10.65% of the portfolio, just over 14.6 million shares.  This allocation, which he has held since 1987, increased by 0.39% in the quarter at an executed price of $75.34.

The fund’s oldest holding, Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) (NYSE:BRK.B), which was acquired in 1982, has an allocation of 9.26% in the portfolio with just over 5,000 shares.  Russo upped the ante with Warren Buffett by 0.61% on the quarter.

Likes “sin” stocks

Russo likes the sin stocks, as his next stock on the list is tobacco giant Philip Morris International Inc. (NYSE:PM), which received a 2.21% allocation increase.  Other Tobacco stocks include British American Tobacco plc (LON:BATS), Altria Group Inc (NYSE:MO), all with increases in portfolio allocation.  Other “sin” stocks include Heineken Holding NV, representing 6.50% of the portfolio, Anheuser Busch Inbev SA (ADR) (NYSE:BUD) representing 5.13% of the portfolio, SABMiller plc (LON:SAB) which, at 5.57% of the portfolio received a strong 4.21% allocation increase.

The stock with the largest increase in allocation in the portfolio, however, is Heineken N.V. (ADR) (OTCMKTS:HINKY), which was increased by a factor of 9.24% followed by Unilever N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:UN), which saw its allocation increase by 7.16%.

Likes Mastercard and Wells Fargo

In terms of financials, Russo favors the traditional banking plays and shies away from those banks with significant unregulated derivatives exposure. Russo likes Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA) and Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC), top holdings at near 7% exposure for each, while they reduced their stake in Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) in the quarter by 1.93% bringing their allocation to this stock at 0.09%.

Russo shed holdings in some interesting names.  He raced out of the door in General Electric Company (NYSE:GE), shedding near 47% of his stake, while reducing exposure to oil marketer BP by 38%.  Other big names losers in Russo’s selling spree include Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA), with holdings down 31%, International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM), who is currently on parade to talk up the stock, down 18% and Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) shedding 16.45% of the allocation while PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE:PEP) lost 22% of the previous allocation from Russo.