* Adds Deere, Precision Castparts, Wabco
* Sheds CVS, sells down J&J, P&G
Nov 14 Warren Buffett's conglomerate Berkshire
Hathaway sold retailers and consumer heavyweight stocks
in the third quarter but took new positions in industrial
manufacturers like Deere & Co and Precision Castparts
, according to a regulatory filing on Wednesday.
Many of the investment decision were made not by Buffett
himself but by his two investment managers, Ted Weschler and
Todd Combs. Buffett has said only the changes in Berkshire's
biggest positions, like adding to holdings of Wells Fargo
, were made by him.
The portfolio was again volatile this quarter, with a number
of large moves in a wide variety of stocks. While Buffett is the
exemplar of buy-and-hold investing, he has indicated that at
least one of the team of Weschler and Combs is inclined to trade
more actively from quarter to quarter.
Berkshire took new stakes in Deere, the world's largest
agricultural equipment maker, as well as Precision Castparts,
whose castings are used in every jet aircraft engine program in
production or under development.
It also took a position in Wabco Holdings, which
makes braking and transmission products for the commercial truck
market, and raised its stake by 50 percent in the automaker
At the same time, Berkshire sold two stocks that were
relatively new to the portfolio, CVS Caremark and Dollar
General. It cut its long-time holding in Johnson &
Johnson by 95 percent and also trimmed its Procter &
Gamble position by another 11 percent.
J&J was one of Berkshire's biggest investments by valuation
over the last five years, but Buffett has been selling it
aggressively this year, telling CNBC in February the company
"has messed up in a lot of ways" in the recent past.
Berkshire was also active in media stocks during the
quarter. In addition to a new stake in Media General,
tied to Berkshire's acquisition of that company's newspapers,
the conglomerate increased its position in Viacom and
sold some of its relatively new holdings in newspaper operator
Buffett's company made a number of investments in financial
stocks as well, adding to positions in his favorite bank Wells
Fargo and also BNY Mellon even as it sold some
holdings in Visa Inc and U.S. Bancorp.
In the second quarter, Berkshire made big bets on the
refiner Phillips 66 and the oilfield equipment maker
National Oilwell Varco.
It raised the National Oilwell stake again in the third
quarter, while cutting its position in former Phillips 66 parent