This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

When Buffett Retires, Berkshire Hathaway Should Comfort Shareholders



So, what could Buffett and Berkshire's board do to ease the pain of the CEO's eventual departure? How about announcing a plan to spinoff to shareholders parts of the publicly traded dynasty? Then by demonstrating the hidden value of those parts, Berkshire Hathaway could offer a reassuring consolation prize.

When one considers the vast diversity of the publicly traded U.S. stocks owned by the company as of the end of 2013, including 31% of the shares of USG Corporation (USG) shares and over $31 billion of Wells Fargo (WFC) stock, carving out a special distribution to its devoted shareholders shouldn't be difficult.

Then there are the privately held pieces like Geico, the second-largest car insurer in the U.S., and Burlington Northern Santa Fe railway, which, according to Bloomberg, is responsible for nearly 21% of Berkshire's pre-tax earnings. Either would make a valuable spinoff.

Perhaps Buffett will take note of what Apple (AAPL) finally did to restore confidence in its stock and encourage shareholders in a big way. A Berkshire Hathaway stock split may be part of the answer as well as an increase in the company's stock buyback program.

Frankly, I don't anticipate that my suggestions will be implemented. I do think Buffett will share some of his thoughts about the future of Berkshire Hathaway in his upcoming letter to shareholders. For now I'm not buying the stock until a correction ensues and a meaningful succession plan is made public.

At the time of publication the author had a position in AAPL.

This article represents the opinion of a contributor and not necessarily that of TheStreet or its editorial staff.

Google+

Marc Courtenay is the founder and owner of Advanced Investor Technologies, LLC, as well as the publisher and editor of www.ChecktheMarkets.com.
2 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 17,279.74 +13.75 0.08%
S&P 500 2,010.40 -0.96 -0.05%
NASDAQ 4,579.7890 -13.6380 -0.30%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs