A recent Wall Street Journal article reports that Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, which funneled $5 billion into Goldman Sachs Holdings in 2008, “slashed the bulk of its holdings” during the first quarter of this year.
“The sale reflects a coda of sorts to an investment born of the financial crisis,” the article notes, adding that Berkshire’s 2008 investment represented a vote of confidence “during a period of existential uncertainty on Wall Street.”
One of Goldman’s largest shareholders, Berkshire reported that it sold more than 10 million shares in the bank during the first quarter, bringing its holdings to 1.9 million shares. Goldman’s share price reportedly fell by 33% in that period “as banks suffered with the coronavirus pandemic slamming the brakes on the global economy.”
The article notes that Buffett “has been a huge backer of U.S. financial services firms in recent years, building up a position in banks, payments companies, insurers and ratings firms. Toward the latter half of last year, these holdings represented about a fifth of Berkshire’s market capitalization.”