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Author: DrtThrwingMonkey Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 212558  
Subject: Re: Volume Date: 12/13/2012 3:24 PM
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I'd guess WEB would wait a day to begin buying shares to allow the news to circulate. Old School.


You'd think so, but then again, remember back to last September.

September 26, 2011
Berkshire Hathaway Authorizes Repurchase Program
Omaha, NE (NYSE: BRK.A; BRK.B)—Our Board of Directors has authorized Berkshire
Hathaway to repurchase Class A and Class B shares of Berkshire at prices no higher than...


Then from the Q3 10Q:

The following table presents information with respect to Berkshire’s repurchases of Class A and Class B common stock from September 26, 2011 through September 30, 2011...

They bought back about 250,000 B equivalents in those 5 days, at an average B price of $71.45, i.e. aboout $20 million worth, with another $50 million in the first days of October, and then the canvas snipping stopped abruptly, with share prices above the magic 110% BV level. I can't be bothered to root around, but I think I remember Buffett on TV on the morning of the repurchase announcement, and he mentioned (if memory serves) that he'd bought some already.

Plus, although I am generally happy about the new, relaxed repurchase rule, I think some of the critics are right to quibble about how it was carried out. Once you realize your criterion makes no sense, it seems to me you should say that you will adjust it (or better still, abandon it, and just announce you will repurchase when this provides net benefit to shareholders), and to be really Old School about it, signal this change a few weeks or months in advance, so that smaller outgoing investors who are not chummy with the boss get the same good price.

Sometimes I think we read too much into these decisions and their announcements, when the simple answer is just that it seemed like a good idea, so they did it, without beating around the bush. Maybe this was another bathtub idea, but it seems that if there were no urgent tax considerations for Mr Ueltschi's estate (and it seems there weren't), maybe it could have been done with a little less haste.

Regards, DTM
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