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Berkshire Hathaway Inc Class B BRK.B

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Morningstar’s Analysis

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Economic Moat




Berkshire Hathaway Adds to Energy Assets With $9.7 Billion Deal for Dominion Energy's Gas Operations

Greggory Warren, CFA Sector Strategist

Analyst Note

| Greggory Warren, CFA |

We do not expect to alter our fair value estimate of $342,500 ($228) per Class A (B) share for wide-moat-rated Berkshire Hathaway following news that the firm has agreed to acquire nearly all of wide-moat-rated Dominion Energy's natural gas transmission and storage operations for $4 billion, or $9.7 billion when including assumed debt. Berkshire closed the March quarter with a record $137 billion in cash and cash equivalents and likely has even more cash on hand coming into the current quarter (it's expected to generate more than $20 billion in free cash flow annually the next several years), so this deal represents only a small reduction in its substantial cash hoard, which continues to serve as a drag on overall returns, especially with short-term interest rates dropping to near zero.

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Company Profile

Business Description

Berkshire Hathaway is a holding company with a wide array of subsidiaries engaged in diverse activities. The firm's core business segment is insurance, run primarily through Geico, Berkshire Hathaway Reinsurance Group and Berkshire Hathaway Primary Group. Berkshire has used the excess cash thrown off from these and its other operations over the years to acquire Burlington Northern Santa Fe (railroad), Berkshire Hathaway Energy (utilities and energy distributors), and the firms that make up its manufacturing, service, and retailing operations (which include five of Berkshire's largest noninsurance pretax earnings generators: Precision Castparts, Lubrizol, Clayton Homes, Marmon and IMC/ISCAR). The conglomerate is unique in that it is run on a completely decentralized basis.

3555 Farnam Street
Omaha, NE, 68131
T +1 402 346-1400
Sector Financial Services
Industry Insurance - Diversified
Most Recent Earnings Mar 31, 2020
Fiscal Year End Dec 31, 2020
Stock Type Aggressive Growth
Employees 391,500