April 25, 2019
(Reuters) – Warren Buffett said his conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway Inc could repurchase as much as $100 billion of its stock, the Financial Times said on Thursday without providing a time frame, citing a recent interview with the billionaire.
Berkshire did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Buffett had said in his February annual letter to shareholders that over time Berkshire would likely be a “significant” buyer of its own stock, when it traded below the Omaha, Nebraska-based company’s estimate of its intrinsic value.
Berkshire repurchased $1.3 billion of its stock last year, after Buffett loosened the company’s buyback criteria.
The buybacks began in part because of Buffett’s inability to make a major acquisition, a significant reason Berkshire ended 2018 with $111.9 billion of cash and equivalents.
In the interview, Buffett “waved off” the idea of paying a shareholder dividend.
He also lamented the prospect of a time when Berkshire’s stock traded at a fair price, and other companies and stocks also looked expensive. “That’s my nightmare,” he said.
Berkshire’s market value is more than $520 billion, based on reported shares outstanding.
Buffett, 88, has run Berkshire since 1965, and has not publicly signaled any intention to stop.
“I have more fun here than I think any 88-year-old is having, virtually, in the world,” he said in the interview from Berkshire’s headquarters.
(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Tom Brown)