Proud to be a Berkshire Shareholder

My wife used to joked with me: you always tout some stocks when you buy, then after it crashed, you will say it’s a crap (XFML, Heelys, LFT, Crocs).

I think I won’t say that for Mindray, and hopefully no hard feelings for BRK, either.

Sold Mindray MR
I sold my remaining Mindray (MR) shares just now, here are the reasons:

Mindray was doing OK up to this point. But I think it may have overpaid for the DataScope patient monitoring business. It paid 202 million, while the business has revenue of 162 m last year. The unit was not profitable according to one analyst, which I believe because I also did a little research myself. The cost structure of DataScope is higher than Mindray; the US medical device market is tough and will be tougher in the credit crisis. Note the hospitals usually need to borrow from banks to finance the new medical devices.

On other hand, at $31.88, the stock is not cheap (PE ttm of about 45). The company expects to grow revenue and earning by 40% this year.

Bought Berkshire BRK.B
I bought one share of Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B) at $4349.89. This is Buffett’s company. If you have read my blog for a while, you know I have great respect for the Oracle of Omaha. Its main business (insurance) will be tough in the near term, but Warren has did some smart acquisitions lately (the Israel company, and a domestic diversified company, I could not remember the names but believe it or not, sometimes those unknown companies made a lot more real money than Crocs)…Although he scaled down the equity investing (relative to the big purchase mentioned above), he has continued to make money in stock market, notably the $3 billion profit from PetroChina last year.

One thing about BRK.B stock: it’s not very liquid. I read note from Yahoo MsgBoard that people used to sell some BRK.A stocks in Jan., because many of those shareholders are old people (they have the stocks for years), sell in Jan. has some tax deferal benifits.

I think the liquidity has improved lately, because now Bill Gates foundation will sell some of the shares donated by Warren each year.

My self imposed trading limit
As I said in my Q1 grades report, I did too many trading (45 times) in last 3 months, and decided to control the trading from now on. The goal is 45 times in the remaing 9 months, that comes to 5 times a month.

Oh, well, I sold some RIMM yesterday, plus the two trades today, now I only have 2 trades left in this month’s quota. Can someone open a Scottrade acct using my reference, so that we can both get 3 free trades :-)

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