Feb 15, 2020 - Economy & Business

If Buffett's job splits, Berkshire Hathaway could be in for a makeover

Warren Buffett speaks to the press in Omaha, Nebraska in May 2019. Photo: Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

Warren Buffett turns 90 in August, and his holding company Berkshire Hathaway could be in for a stock-boosting makeover after he eventually retires, Andrew Bary of Barron's writes (subscription).

Why it matters: Many investors believe that new leadership could allow room for new value as the conglomerate breaks up, Bary writes — "or at least be more amenable to an idea that Buffett opposes."

History lesson: "In his 55 years at the helm as CEO, chairman, and investment chief, Buffett turned a struggling textile maker into a $555 billion conglomerate, using investment skills that became the envy of American business."

  • "An investor who put $1,000 — roughly 50 shares — in Berkshire in 1965 would now have $20 million, against $175,000 for a similar investment in the S&P 500."

What's next: Buffett's "job probably will be split in three, with a CEO, one or two investment chiefs, and a chairman, expected to be his elder son, Howard," per Bary.

Go deeper: Warren Buffett gives up on newspapers

Go deeper

Warren Buffett releases annual letter, reassures investors about future of Berkshire Hathaway

Warren Buffett. Photo: Daniel Zuchnik/WireImage

Warren Buffett released his annual letter to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders on Saturday morning, sharing investment reflections and eyeing the future of the Omaha, Nebraska-based holding company and the market at large.

Details, via Axios' Courtenay Brown: Buffett turns 90 this year, though there’s no indication he plans to step aside, there is speculation about Buffett’s successor. Berkshire also notably exited the newspaper business last month.

Biogen brings in Warren Buffett, loses Ray Dalio

Biogen has been an active stock. Photo: John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

A lot of Biogen's value hinges on whether federal scientists and regulators will approve or reject its drug candidate for Alzheimer's.

Driving the news: The drug, called aducanumab, has attracted people like Warren Buffett to invest in Biogen's stock on the assumption the drug will score approval for a patient population that desperately seeks a treatment. But other wealthy investors, like Ray Dalio, have taken a less sanguine view and dumped Biogen completely.

Go deeperArrowFeb 18, 2020 - Health

Jack Welch dies at 84

Photo: Brooks Kraft/Getty Images

Jack Welch, the former chairman and CEO of General Electric, died at 84, according to a Monday announcement from his wife.

Why it matters: During Welch's 20 years at the helm of the conglomerate, the company's market value grew from $12 billion to $410 billion, becoming one of the world’s most valuable companies, CNBC reports. He was known for his streamlining of GE's workforce, cutting its employees by more than 100,000 at the start of his tenure to improve the company's bottom line.