Gerald Miller | CNBC
Warren Buffett’s net worth topped $100 billion for the first time as Berkshire Hathaway shares rallied to record highs.
Berkshire’s Class A shares closed at a record high of $399,650 on Wednesday, bringing its 2021 advance to more than 14%. That put the “Oracle of Omaha” massive stake in the conglomerate at a market value above $99.5 billion. Taking into account Buffett’s other holdings, Forbes estimated that the legendary investor’s fortune reached about $100.5 billion as of Thursday, making him the sixth richest person in the world.
The 90-year-old Buffett currently owns 249,000 shares of Berkshire Class A stock, giving him a 38% ownership of the conglomerate, according to FactSet. At the stock’s intraday high of $407,750 Wednesday, Buffett’s stake was worth $101.5 billion.
His fortune was estimated at $73.5 billion in September 2020, according to Forbes.
Buffett has contributed Berkshire “B” shares to the Gates Foundation and other family foundations since 2006, which had a value totaling more than $37 billion, Berkshire said in a statement in July.
Wall Street analysts and investors have grown bullish on Berkshire after the conglomerate turned in a better-than-feared 2020 even as some of its businesses like railroad and retail suffered damage from the pandemic. Revenues totaled $245.5 billion in 2020, only a 3.5% year-over-year decline.
Many said Berkshire is well-positioned to benefit from the historic economic reopening as its array of large businesses are about to experience above-average growth, including insurance, transportation, utility, retail and manufacturing.
Berkshire’s shares rebounded to a record after the conglomerate bought back a record level its own shares in 2020, totaling $24.7 billion.
Its strong gains in its equity portfolio also helped the conglomerate offset some of the pandemic impact. Berkshire is still sitting on a huge cash war chest with more than $138 billion at the end of 2020.