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A first: Berkshire could pay dividend, magazine says


Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. could pay a dividend in the next 12 to 18 months, according to a report in the Jan. 24 issue of Barron’s, Reuters reported today. Berkshire hasn’t paid a dividend since Buffett took control in 1965. Instead, it has reinvested its profits. Berkshire had $30 billion in cash in its insurance units as of Sept. 30, 2010. It could have nearly $50 billion by the end of 2011, according to the report. The company is on track to post a record $12 billion to $13 billion in after-tax operating earnings in 2011, buoyed in part by Berkshire’s purchase of the Burlington Northern railroad, Barron’s wrote. It is also likely that Berkshire’s investments in Goldman Sachs Group Inc., General Electric Co. and others — all made during the financial crisis — could be repaid, Reuters said.

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