Which Stocks Does Gilchrist Berg’s WS Management Love?

On the deadline date for the second quarter of 13F filings, WS Management, the Chicago-based hedge fund managed by Gilchrist Berg, disclosed its long equity positions as of June 30 2014. The fund revealed a diversified equity portfolio worth more than $3.2 billion, after starting 17 new positions and selling out of 17 other holdings over the period. Let’s, thus, take a look at its top holdings in order to find out if any of them stand as alluring investment options.

Although the fund trimmed its stakes in both its largest positions, these continue to lead the list. WS Management has more than $885 million invested in Warrent’s Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, holding both Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.B).

Following a 6% reduction in its exposure to Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.B), the fund owns 4.12 million shares, worth approximately $522 million. In addition, the fund disclosed ownership of 1,913 shares of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A), with a market value of more than $363 million. Another major hedge fund betting on both Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.A) and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE:BRK.B) is Jean-Marie Eveillard’s First Eagle Investment Management, which disclosed ownership of 3,947 shares of Class A stock, and 1,669 shares of Class B stock.

Largest Financial Services Companies

Third in line (same as in the first quarter) is Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) which is one of the biggest banks in the World. Over the second quarter, the fund acquired 16,100 shares, taking its holding to 4.38 million shares. In addition, as the stock returned almost 7% between April and June, the fund’s stake in Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) also gained in value. The position is now worth $230 million, and accounts for roughly 7% of the fund’s total equity portfolio. As most investors already know, Warren Buffett can be counted amongst Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC)’s largest investors. Berkshire Hathaway has its largest holding in this company. The fund recently disclosed ownership of more than 463 million shares of the company – the stake was unchanged over the second quarter.

CarMax Inc. (NYSE:KMX) escalated from the sixth to the fourth spot in Mr. Berg’s list. The $10.9 billion market cap used vehicle retailer saw WS Management purchase 8,400 shares over the second quarter. Its holdings at CarMax Inc. (NYSE:KMX) now amount to 2.44 million shares, worth more than $127 million, which account for almost 4% of the fund’s equity portfolio’s total value.

Harris Associates also boosted its exposure to CarMax Inc. (NYSE:KMX) over the quarter. After a 42% increase in its stake, the fund owns 6 million shares of the retailer, worth more than $313 million.

Disclosure: Javier Hasse holds no position in any stocks or funds mentioned

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