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TheStreet Open House

BYD May Be Taking Cues From Buffett

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Is BYD taking a page out of Warren Buffett's book?

In moving away from its bold goal of mass producing an electric vehicle in China this year, BYD appears to reflect a similar conservative shift Buffett has recently been noted for.

Buffett, who in the past has been known for picking out undervalued stocks with massive upside potential, has recently made it clear that he is transitioning towards a more conservative investment strategy.

According to Berkshire Hathaway's (BRK.A - Get Report) most recently quarterly 13-F filing, the financier has been placing the vast number of his largest bets on companies more known for stability rather than pop.

Some notable tweaks made to his legendary portfolio include large increases to his holdings of retail giant Wal-Mart (WMT - Get Report) and Republic Services Group (RSG - Get Report), a trash company. In his annual letter to Berkshire shareholders, the financier also referenced his large cash position, saying that although it's earning 0% interest, he sleeps well at night.

Taking more conservative approaches to doing business will likely mean that returns for BYD and Berkshire Hathaway will be less dramatic than in the past. However, these transitions will also ensure that investors see consistent returns over the long term.

BYD, which stands for "Build Your Dreams," has taken the international and domestic auto industry by storm. Though the company's roots lay in the battery and power source producing industry, it has risen to become a symbol for the alternative and electric automobile revolution.

Since first making the bet in 2008, Warren Buffett's play on BYD has earned the investor billions. This week, Buffett and the rest of the company's shareholders were treated to a welcomed boost when the firm reported that strong car sales helped lift the company's fourth- quarter net profit 500%.

Though BYD has largely been focused on satisfying China's automobile demand, investors and car enthusiasts have long been buzzing over when the first BYD vehicles will hit American soil. Though there remains a strong chance that we will see the company's cars on U.S. roads in the near future, the trendsetting firm appears to have extinguished plans to mass produce its electric cars in China this year.

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