Few can argue with the track record of the world's richest man. And even if his latest year wasn't his best, Warren Buffet's market moves should be of at least passing interest to investors of every variety.

Here are four companies that the "Oracle of Omaha" bought for his Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A) portfolio within the latest reporting period. Does timing matter to Buffett? Count on it. (To learn more about Buffett, see Warren Buffett: The Road To Riches.)

IN PICTURES: World's Greatest Investors

One Stock Buffett Already Owns
The first position highlighted is a stock that Buffett already owns: Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE:WFC). Since its acquisition of Wachovia last year, Wells has grown to be worth $131 billion in market cap. Along the way, like so many other banks, it forfeited its dividend, which currently pays an annual 0.71%. The current P/E on the stock is a not-so-impressive 32.98.

Buffett recently added over 10 million shares to his already mammoth 300 million share holding.

Three New Horses in the Berkshire Stable
In this last reporting period, Buffett also took an opening position in oil and gas megalith Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) to the tune of $87 million. XOM shares currently trade with an annual yield of 2.24% and have a P/E of 17.61. Buffett likes stocks that generate lots of cash, and XOM fits the bill perfectly. The company reported nearly $43 billion in free cash flow this quarter, putting it at the top of U.S.-based stocks in terms of that particular metric.

Another new addition to the Berkshire stable is Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG), a waste management conglomerate with operations in 40 states. RSG stock will pay Mr. Buffett and his shareholders a 2.70% annual dividend while trading with a trailing multiple of 42.89x last year's earnings. Buffett opened with a purchase of $96 million worth of common stock.

Another Financial Giant
Nearly a third of Buffett's holdings are in financial services stocks, and he recently fortified his holdings in the sector with an opening purchase in former Dow component, The Travelers Companies, Inc. (NYSE:TRV). The purchase was very modest (by Berkshire Hathaway standards), totaling a mere $1.3 million. Indeed, one wonders what exactly the investing sage's endgame is in owning the shares.

TRV trades with a P/E of 9.77 and offers a dividend yield of 2.51%.

The Wrap

Warren Buffett's recent purchases reveal an ongoing affinity with financial services and a sturdy faith in the fate of equities in general. It behooves all value investors to keep abreast of the thinking - and the actions - of the world's wealthiest individual. (Find out more about the Oracle in Warren Buffett: How He Does It.)

Use the Investopedia Stock Simulator to trade the stocks mentioned in this stock analysis, risk free!

Related Articles
  1. Stock Analysis

    Net Neutrality: Pros and Cons

    The fight over net neutrality has become an amazing spectacle. But at its core, it's yet another skirmish in cable television's war to remain relevant.
  2. Personal Finance

    A Day in the Life of an Equity Research Analyst

    What does an equity research analyst do on an everyday basis?
  3. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: PowerShares S&P 500 Downside Hedged

    Find out about the PowerShares S&P 500 Downside Hedged ETF, and learn detailed information about characteristics, suitability and recommendations of it.
  4. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: ProShares Large Cap Core Plus

    Learn information about the ProShares Large Cap Core Plus ETF, and explore detailed analysis of its characteristics, suitability and recommendations.
  5. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: iShares Core Growth Allocation

    Find out about the iShares Core Growth Allocation Fund, and learn detailed information about its characteristics, suitability and recommendations.
  6. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: iShares MSCI USA Minimum Volatility

    Learn about the iShares MSCI USA Minimum Volatility exchange-traded fund, which invests in low-volatility equities traded on the U.S. stock market.
  7. Stock Analysis

    Should You Follow Millionaires into This Sector?

    Millionaire investors—and those who follow them—should take another look at the current economic situation before making any more investment decisions.
  8. Professionals

    What to do During a Market Correction

    The market has corrected...now what? Here's what you should consider rather than panicking.
  9. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: Vanguard Mid-Cap Value

    Take an in-depth look at the Vanguard Mid-Cap Value ETF, one of the largest and most popular mid-cap funds in the U.S. equity space.
  10. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    ETF Analysis: Schwab US Broad Market

    Take an in-depth look at the Schwab U.S. Broad Market ETF, an incredibly low-cost fund based on a wide selection of the U.S. equity market.
RELATED TERMS
  1. Equity

    The value of an asset less the value of all liabilities on that ...
  2. Hunting Elephants

    The practice of targeting large companies or customers.
  3. Warren Buffett

    Known as "the Oracle of Omaha", Buffett is Chairman of Berkshire ...
  4. Hard-To-Sell Asset

    An asset that is extremely difficult to dispose of either due ...
  5. Sucker Yield

    When an investor has essentially risked all of his capital for ...
  6. PT (Perseroan Terbatas)

    An acronym for Perseroan Terbatas, which is Limited Liability ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. What is the difference between called-up share capital and paid-up share capital?

    The difference between called-up share capital and paid-up share capital is investors have already paid in full for paid-up ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Why would a corporation issue convertible bonds?

    A convertible bond represents a hybrid security that has bond and equity features; this type of bond allows the conversion ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. How does additional paid in capital affect retained earnings?

    Both additional paid-in capital and retained earnings are entries under the shareholders' equity section of a company's balance ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What types of capital are not considered share capital?

    The money a business uses to fund operations or growth is called capital, and there are a number of capital sources available. ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What is the difference between issued share capital and subscribed share capital?

    The difference between subscribed share capital and issued share capital is the former relates to the amount of stock for ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. What happens to the shares of stock purchased in a tender offer?

    The shares of stock purchased in a tender offer become the property of the purchaser. From that point forward, the purchaser, ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

COMPANIES IN THIS ARTICLE
Trading Center
×

You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!