Super-investor Warren Buffett has sold DirecTV shares and bulked up on Charter Communications Inc. as he looks at new bets in the pay-TV business.
Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc., Omaha, Neb., held about 2.3 million shares of Charter on June 30, Berkshire said this week in a filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The Charter holding is valued at about $360 million.
Charter, which is partly owned by cable pioneer John Malone, is expected to add millions of TV and Internet subscribers as part of Comcast Corp.'s proposed $45-billion acquisition of Time Warner Cable Inc.
Comcast has agreed to shed the subscribers to satisfy the Federal Communications Commission and the Justice Department.
Buffett also cut his stake in satellite-TV operator DirecTV - which has agreed to be acquired by AT&T Inc. - by 11 million shares to 23.5 million shares.
While Buffett and his deputies continue to add new investments, their stock purchases have slowed this year amid surging equity values. They've also sold some holdings. That helped boost Berkshire's cash hoard to a record $55.5 billion on June 30.
"For many years, Buffett has had this huge surplus of funds," said David Kass, a professor at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business who has taken students to meet the billionaire in Omaha. "He'd be happier if he could find his $20 billion investment."
Buffett, 83, has long focused on acquiring companies and making concentrated stock bets as Berkshire's chairman and chief executive officer. Almost 60 percent of Berkshire's $119.2 billion equity portfolio as of June 30 was in Wells Fargo & Co., Coca-Cola Co., American Express Co. and International Business Machines Corp.