Dennis Van Tine/AP
Shares of Berkshire Hathaway rose 1.89% on Monday morning after Warren Buffett delivered his annual shareholder letter over the weekend. In addition to his usual thoughts on investing, Buffett wrote that the conglomerate’s net worth soared up by $65 billion in 2017, nearly half of which came from proceeds from the GOP tax reform law.
The company received a $29 billion tax bump after the tax plan passed Congress last December, Buffett wrote in his letter.
Berkshire Hathaway’s tax boost helps confirm a widely-held belief that financial services firms will be among the biggest beneficiaries of the tax plan.
Buffett also revealed in his letter that the company’s property-and-casualty insurance business, which he describes as “the engine that for 51 years has powered Berkshire’s growth,” had taken a loss in 2017 for the first time in 14 years due to the three hurricanes that swept through the US and Puerto Rico.
Berkshire’s insurance business took $3 billion in losses from the damage of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, or $2 billion after taxes, Buffett said in the letter.
Despite the losses, the company made $3.7 billion in dividends from its stock holdings alone last year which helped keep its profits up.
Berkshire class A shares were trading at $309,770 per share, and was up 4.6% for the year.