Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway received $29B windfall from Trump's tax overhaul

With $116 billion cash Warren Buffett says Berkshire needs huge acquisitions

But this year's letter left some investors wanting more because he didn't say much about Berkshire's succession plan, some noteworthy investment moves or the company's new partnership with Amazon and JP Morgan Chase to reduce health care costs.

However, Berkshire, whose earnings power is largely concentrated in the insurance business, also lost an estimated $3 billion ($2 billion, after taxes) after the three devastating hurricanes hit Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico in September.

Thanks to legislation, signed by United States president Donald Trump in late December, Berkshire Hathaway was able to add an extra $29 billion to its net worth gains.

"Our smiles will broaden when we have redeployed Berkshire's excess funds into more productive assets", Buffett, who is Berkshire's chief executive, said in his annual letter to shareholders.

Buffett also lamented his inability to find big companies to buy, and said his goal was to make "one or more huge acquisitions" of non-insurance businesses to bolster results.

"Buffett doesn't dwell very long on the politics", Smead said. And just how did TCJA, as Berkshire abbreviates it, do so much for the company?

Buffet said that a dearth of "sensible" valuations led it to close nearly no takeovers of companies in 2017, adding that "price seemed nearly irrelevant to an army of optimistic purchasers". And Buffett is unwilling to load up on debt to finance deals at current prices.




Edward Jones analyst Jim Shanahan said he expected Buffett to devote more of the letter to explaining his decision to promote and name the top two candidates to eventually succeed him as Berkshire's CEO.

"Performance comes, performance goes".

He admitted that the struggle in finding a "sensible purchase price" had "proved a barrier to virtually all deals" past year.

Berkshire's other businesses, which include BNSF railroad, a number of electric utilities and an assortment of manufacturing and retail businesses, helped offset the insurance losses. That ended past year, and Buffett - who bet slow, steady gains by the S&P 500 would beat out hedge funds over the decade - won with flying colors. A willingness to look unimaginative for a sustained period - or even to look foolish - is also essential.

Warren Buffett's letter to shareholders released Saturday showed the final scorecard of his 10-year bet against hedge funds.

Berkshire owns more than 90 subsidiaries, including clothing, furniture and jewelry firms. Hello, Coca-Cola, American Express, Apple, and Wells Fargo!

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