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5 Key Takeaways From Warren Buffetts Annual Letter, Berkshire Hathaway Earnings [Video]

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Berkshire Hathaway’s (BRK.A, BRK.B) cash pile swelled to a record in the fourth quarter of 2023 while earnings soared despite weakness in its railroad and energy businesses, according to its earnings report Saturday.

This was Berkshire’s first quarterly report since Vice Chair Charlie Munger, 99, died in November. Buffett led his much-anticipated shareholder letter with an homage to his right-hand man, dubbing him “The Architect of Berkshire Hathaway.”

Class A and B shares of Berkshire closed at a record on Friday, up almost 17% and 15%, respectively, this year.

Berkshire reported full-year net earnings of $96.2 billion compared to a loss of $22.8 billion for 2022. But Buffett is loathe to report the figure—he called it “worse-than-useless” in his letter to shareholders—because it includes unrealized gains and losses, that can exceed $5 billion a day, on Berkshire’s massive equity portfolio.

Instead, Buffett prefers operating earnings, which rose to $8.5 billion in …

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