Wall Street investor Buffett struck it richest in 1992

January 06, 1993|By Bloomberg Business News

NEW YORK -- Warren Buffett, famed Wall Street investor an chairman of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., reaped about $1.3 billion last year, the largest individual net increase in wealth in 1992, according to statistics compiled by Birinyi Associates.

In 1992, Berkshire shares rose about 30 percent, to $11,750 a share, from $9,050 a share a year ago. On Nov. 17, Berkshire became the first stock to trade at more than $10,000 a share. Mr. Buffett owns about 45 percent of Berkshire's 1.15 million common shares.

Laszlo Birinyi, president of Birinyi Associates, said Mr. Buffett's stake in Berkshire was the primary reason for the surge in his fortune.

Mr. Buffett is known for taking large positions in companies he considers undervalued. He then holds the stock as a passive investor for several years.

Mr. Buffett has investments in Salomon Inc., General Dynamics Corp., Wells Fargo & Co., Capital Cities/ABC Inc. and Coca-Cola Co. Other investments include Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp., Gillette Co. and Washington Post Co.

Bill Gates, chairman and chief executive officer of Microsoft Corp., ranked second to Mr. Buffett with a $919 million rise in his personal fortune.

The Walton family, whose Wal-Mart Stores Inc. became the largest U.S. retailer in 1992, can distribute an additional $916 million to its heirs.

Kirk Kerkorian's wealth rose $843 million last year, ranking him fourth. Mr. Kerkorian is a major shareholder of MGM Grand Inc. and Chrysler Corp.

Lawrence Ellison, Oracle Systems Corp. president and CEO, rounds out the top five with a $466 million rise in assets.

The top performer in terms of percentage net increase in wealth was Mr. Kerkorian, at 114.8 percent.

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