Berkshire Hathaway (BRK-B)
Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway reported its first quarterly loss in a year as the conglomerate enterprise of the Oracle of Omaha was hit by Apple’s (AAPL) falling share prices.
The company’s operating earnings jumped by 41% to $10.76bn (£8.66bn) last quarter but net losses more than quadrupled to $12.77bn.
Berkshire recommended that investors look past investment gains or losses, which are tied to accounting rules, saying that can be misleading to investors.
The value of Berkshire’s portfolio of shares shrank to $319bn from $353bn at the end of June, as the prices of Apple and other stocks fell.
The firm also spent $1.1bn on buybacks in the period, bringing the total for the first nine months of the year to about $7bn.
Berkshire held a record $157.2bn in cash at the end of September, topping the $149.2bn high set in the third quarter of 2021.
Warren Buffet’s company has been taking advantage of rising bond yields, buying up short-term Treasury bills yielding at least 5%. Berkshire owned $126.4bn worth of such investments at the end of the third quarter
Profits at Ryanair rose 59% to €2.18bn (£1.89bn, $2.34bn) in the six months to September and shares surged over 6% as the airline announced its first ever dividend.
Europe’s largest discount airline now expects to make a profit-after-tax for the full year of between €1.85bn and €2.05bn, despite its higher fuel bill.
The Dublin-based carrier declared its maiden dividend of €400m as it increased passenger fares by 24%.
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Michael O’Leary, chief executive of Ryanair, said the full-year out-turn would be held back by a steep increase in fuel cost, “making it unlikely that we’ll replicate last year’s bumper third quarter performance”.
However, the group said its forward bookings are “robust” heading into the Christmas season.
Novo Nordisk (NVO)
The pharma firm has warned that it will accelerate its US expansion at the expense of the EU unless Brussels changes a plan to reform regulation of the industry.
The European Commission has proposed shortening the time a new medicine remains patented in a bid to reduce the cost of medicines for its citizens with a faster shift to cheaper generics. The proposal would reduce new medicine approval times to 180 days from 400 days.
Lars Fruergaard Jorgensen, CEO of Novo Nordisk, said that the reduction would not allow a pharmaceutical company to recoup the investment in development as well as the cost of marketing.
"If you chop off, one or two or three years of exclusivity, it’s the peak sales that you take away. When you launch a product, you have a negative profit contribution because you invest more in marketing, sales...it's really only the last few years that you recoup your investment," Jorgensen said.
The Danish company responsible for weight loss and diabetes drugs Wegovy and Ozempic has become Europe’s most valuable listed company.
Tesla was up in premarket trading after reports that the electric-vehicle maker plans to build a €25,000 car at its factory near Berlin.
Tesla chief executive Elon Musk visited the plant in Gruenheide, near Berlin, after attending an artificial intelligence summit in England.
Musk has long teased the prospect of a more affordable electric car, but said in 2022 he had not yet mastered the technology so shelved the plan, according to Reuters.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Tesla has been under pressure from Germany’s IG Metall union, which is trying to organise the plant and get Tesla to agree to a union contract.