Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway is out with its annual letter to shareholders. "Over the years, I’ve often been asked for investment advice, and in the process of answering I’ve learned a good deal about human behavior," Buffett said in the letter.
The Great Restructuring in retail continues. In the wake of a disappointing holiday season, J.C. Penney (JCP) said Friday it will close 130 to 140 stores by the second quarter. The store closures represent 13% to 14% of the company's current store base and less than 5% of annual sales. They have a negligible impact on net income. J.C. Penney said same-store sales at the locations were "significantly below" the remaining store base and operate at a much higher expense rate due to poor productivity. The company expects $200 million in annual costs savings from the efforts. "We believe closing stores will also allow us to adjust our business to effectively compete against the growing threat of
“Today, I would rather prep for a colonoscopy than issue Berkshire shares,” writes Warren Buffett in his latest letter to Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-A, BRK-B) shareholders. “I earlier described our gradual shift from a company obtaining most of its gains from investment activities to one that grows in value by owning businesses,” Buffett writes. “Launching that transition, we took baby steps — making small acquisitions whose impact on Berkshire’s profits was dwarfed by our gains from marketable securities.