Apple buoyed by Buffett, headed for record closing high

The rally came after CNBC reported that Berkshire Hathaway bought 75 million shares of Apple during the first quarter and sold virtually all of its shares in IBM.

Buffett's Apple commitment over the past two years has surprised many, given his historical aversion to companies associated with the technology sector. Buffett said fretting about short-term iPhone sales is the equivalent of "worrying about the number of BlackBerrys 10 years ago", and that Apple is "an unbelievable business". Berkshire's latest Apple investment have suggested that it serves as a way of minimizing the corporate group's $116 billion. But the billionaire investor is out of the company IBM.

While short sellers were going to town on AAPL, Buffett took the opportunity to buy Apple stock at a discount.

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Berkshire had $116 billion in cash at the end of a year ago, so has plenty of spare money to make big investments. The report for the first quarter is scheduled for release on Saturday morning, just before Berkshire's annual shareholder meeting in its Omaha, Nebraska, hometown. That report will include information on Apple, and the rest of Berkshire's 10 largest holdings.

Berkshire Hathaway and Apple were not available for comment outside regular business hours.

The stake in Apple, which Berkshire began building in early 2016 with a $1 billion investment, a decision that at the time was driven by one of the money managers Buffett hired to manage the stock side of Berkshire's investments.

  • Sonia Alvarado