As a long-time shareholder of Berkshire as well as many utilities, I’m encouraged. I’m skeptical of some of the names being floated as MidAmerican’s next potential targets. But the feature article highlights several companies that fit the mold of NV Energy and PacifiCorp, which Berkshire bought in March 2006 from the former ScottishPower.
MidAmerican earned $1.47 billion in 2013 as one of Berkshire’s “Powerhouse Five” non-insurance businesses. That was approximately 7.5 percent of the company’s overall profit, a share that will rise to around 10 percent in 2014, thanks to a full year of owning NV Energy.
Even after the next acquisition, electric utility assets will be less significant to Berkshire’s fortunes than insurance, or even railroads (20 percent of profits). But there are two clear takeaways from Mr. Buffett’s continuing interest in the power sector.
First, MidAmerican is likely to buy another utility this year, handing investors windfall gains. Second, there are regulated electricity assets that still meet the criteria of the world’s most successful value investor.
Janet Yellen acknowledged that the Fed might start to raise interest rates six months after phasing out its bond-buying program toward the end of 2014. Take advantage of the selloff in dividend-paying stocks to add high-quality names.
Thanks again to everyone who tuned in to my second on-line chat for Conrad’s Utility Investor subscribers last week. The full transcript of the 4-hour question and answer session is now available on the CUI website by clicking on the “Events” tab from the home page.
Conrad's Utility Investor has three actively managed portfolios--Aggressive Income, Conservative Income and Top 10 Drips--each of which is tailored to a specific investment style and risk tolerance. We review each model portfolio's objective, book a 60 percent gain on one of our winners and shift one of our Conservative Income Portfolio holdings to the Aggressive Income Portfolio.
Only two Portfolio holdings have yet to turn in earnings this reporting season. Aggressive Holding ENEL SPA (Italy: ENEL, OTC: ENLAY) will unveil its fourth quarter 2013 numbers on March 11. Conservative Holding Piedmont Natural Gas (NYSE: PNY) releases its first quarter fiscal 2014 results on March 7.
With large financial institutions and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) dominating daily trading, markets are as volatile as ever.
Fortunately, the key to success in utilities and essential services is the same as it’s been for more than a century: Spotting where investment will earn a fair return, and following the money to a rising stream of dividends.
The Conrad’s Utility Investor Portfolios officially launched on July 31, 2013. Since that time, the Dow Jones Utility Average is off -2.3 percent, including dividends paid.
My Aggressive Income Portfolio is up by 9.3 percent, while the Conservative Income Portfolio has returned 3.3 percent.
Roger's favorite utilities for investors seeking superior price appreciation by taking calculated risks.
Harness the tried and true wealth-building power of rising dividends.
Nothing compounds wealth like reinvesting a rising stream of dividends.
Warning: Falling Dividends.
Roger's current take and vital statistics on more than 200 essential-services stocks.