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Market Update

Berkshire Puts More Than $2 Billion to Work in Stocks

New money purchases in the second quarter include Suncor Energy and DISH Network.

Wide-moat-rated  Berkshire Hathaway's (BRK.A) (BRK.B) second-quarter 13-F filing, which details the firm's equity holdings at the end of the June quarter, continued the theme we've seen in the past few years of the firm selling off stakes in legacy holdings to help fund the investment portfolios Ted Weschler and Todd Combs are running.

Berkshire continued to wind down its stake in  Kraft Foods Group , which Buffett started selling off during the second quarter of 2011, and substantially reduced its stake in  Mondelez International (MDLZ), which was spun off from Kraft in the fourth quarter of last year. As they represented less than $30 million in combined value at the end of the second quarter, we'd be surprised if either stock stayed in the portfolio much longer.

While shares of  Washington Post (WPO) remain in the portfolio, we'd be interested to see what happens with that legacy holding following the firm's sale of its newspaper operations. Buffett was willing to sell off  Gannett (GCI), though, during the quarter, completely eliminating a stake in the publisher of USA TODAY that has been in Berkshire's portfolio since the mid-1990s. Other sales during the quarter included shares of  Moody's (MCO) and  GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

Berkshire put far more money to work than it generated with its sales, investing more than $2 billion in stocks during the period (funded in part by around $500 million in net proceeds from its sales). Replacing old media stocks with new media names, Berkshire put money to work in  DISH Network (DISH), committing $20 million to the satellite TV firm and augmenting an already substantial stake (of more than $2 billion) in  DIRECTV .

This new-money purchase was relatively small in comparison with the more than $500 million that Berkshire invested in  Suncor Energy (SU), which represents the second foray that Buffett's two lieutenants have made into the energy sector, with the other being  National Oilwell Varco (NOV) (which also saw additional investment during the quarter).

Other purchases included 16.8 million shares of  US Bancorp (USB), 15 million shares of  General Motors (GM), 5 million shares of  Wells Fargo (WFC), 3 million shares of Chicago Bridge & Iron , 5.7 million shares of  Bank of New York Mellon (BK), and 1.4 million shares of  VeriSign (VRSN).

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Greggory Warren does not own (actual or beneficial) shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.