Berkshire Hathaway increases its stake in Occidental Petroleum to 25%

(Reuters) – Berkshire Hathaway Inc (BRKa.N) said on Wednesday it has acquired more shares in Occidental Petroleum Corp. (OXY.N), increasing its stake in the oil company to more than 25%.

The group, which is controlled by billionaire Warren Buffett, said in a regulatory filing that it paid about $122.1 million for 2.14 million shares of Occidental between June 26 and June 28.

Berkshire also purchased about 4.66 million shares of Occidental on May 30.

Buffett’s company began buying shares of the Houston-based Occidental early last year, just as Russia invaded Ukraine and as oil prices soared.

It also recently owned about $9.5 billion in preferred Occidental shares which carry an 8% dividend, as well as warrants to buy another $5 billion in Occidental shares at $59.62 per share. Berkshire bought the preferred stock and acquired the warrants in 2019 when it helped fund Occidental’s purchase of Anadarko Petroleum Corp.

At the annual shareholder interview On May 6 in Omaha, Nebraska, Buffett praised Occidental’s management and business, but said that Berkshire was not planning to acquire the company.

“We’re not going to buy control,” Buffett said. “We have the right management to run it.” Berkshire amassed a 22.6% stake in the BNSF rail line before paying $26.5 billion for the remainder in 2010. BNSF now makes about a fifth of Berkshire’s operating profit.

Berkshire also owns dozens of other companies including auto insurance Geico and several energy, manufacturing and retail companies, as well as stocks such as Apple Inc (AAPL.O).

Additional reporting by Jonathan Stempel and Akanksha Khushi in Bengaluru; Editing by Sherry Jacob Phillips

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