To Own, or Not to Own: That Is the Question

As we start the run-up to the Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A/BRK.B) annual meeting this coming weekend in Omaha, I want to address the perennial question: Is an investor better off simply owning Berkshire stock, with the huge capital base issue that entails, or should you try to track the value added by mimicking the new purchases and sales that Berkshire Hathaway makes each year? Obviously, there is no way to know going forward, but recent history would suggest that the incremental approach would be the winner for your portfolio.

In order to reach this conclusion, I looked at the major trades disclosed by Warren Buffett each year in the annual report and compiled an equal-weighted portfolio of the major names on the date the report is issued. (Our effort is complicated because he has a pretty substantial "other" category of smaller weightings. Also, of course, we are not including complete acquisitions.)...345 more words left in this article. To read them, just click below and try Real Money FREE for 14 days.

Read the full story and get access to the Real Money Pro trading floor.

There’s no substitute for a trading floor to get great ideas, so Jim Cramer created a better one at Real Money and blogs there exclusively. We then added legendary hedge fund manager, Doug Kass, with his exclusive Daily Diary and best investing ideas. Staffed with more than 4 dozen investing pros, money managers, journalists and analysts, Real Money Pro gives you a flood of opinions, analysis and actionable trading advice found nowhere else, and allows you to interact directly with each expert.

Already a Subscriber? Please login.

Except as otherwise indicated, quotes are delayed. Quotes delayed at least 20 minutes for all exchanges. Market Data provided by Interactive Data. Company fundamental data provided by Morningstar. Earnings and ratings provided by Zacks. Mutual fund data provided by Valueline. ETF data provided by Lipper. Powered and implemented by Interactive Data Managed Solutions.

TheStreet Ratings updates stock ratings daily. However, if no rating change occurs, the data on this page does not update. The data does update after 90 days if no rating change occurs within that time period.

IDC calculates the Market Cap for the basic symbol to include common shares only. Year-to-date mutual fund returns are calculated on a monthly basis by Value Line and posted mid-month.