A decade ago, Berkshire Hathaway founder Warren Buffett said he just didn’t get Apple. Today, Apple shares make up some 43% of Berkshire Hathaway’s entire stock portfolio, according to a report from Motley Fool.
The firm’s 245 million Apple shares have increased in value by more than $55 billion since the start of 2019 to be worth upward of $91 billion. Still, from an investor’s perspective, it makes you wonder whether you’d be better off simply investing in AAPL itself, rather than paying a fund manager!
“I think of it as our third business,” Buffett told CNBC’s Squawk Box back in February. Since then, the firm has only continued to add to its Apple holdings. It is currently Apple’s second-largest shareholders with around 5.5% ownership of Apple’s publicly available stock.
Warren Buffett and Apple: Lots of mutual respect
Apple has been good to Buffet, and vice versa. Berkshire Hathaway’s investment in Apple has, at one time, netted it upward of $2.6 billion in a single day. Buffett’s strategy of investing for the long terms has also helped calm the nerves of shaky investors when Apple has run into problems.
In a 2018 interview to mark his 88th birthday, Buffett lavished praise on Apple — and one device in particular. “Hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of millions of people … practically live their lives by it,” he said, referring to the iPhone.
Apple has returned Buffett’s faith in the company by creating an app dedicated to the legendary investor, called Warren Buffett’s Paper Wizard.. Its name is a reference to Buffett’s childhood newspaper round.
Buffett, for his part, may have faith in Apple, but he still doesn’t pretend to understand the technology it makes. Earlier this year, Buffett talked about receiving a personal iPhone lesson from Tim Cook — which didn’t take. “I went out to California, and Tim Cook very patiently spent hours trying to move me up to the level of the average two-year-old,” Buffett told Yahoo Finance editor-in-chief Andy Serwer. “And didn’t quite make it.”