Apparently, incidentally auctioning off a one-hour lunch date to a crypto evangelist who, we imagine, used the opportunity to harangue Buffett about his bearish outlook on crypto didn't spoil the billion investor's appetite for charitable giving.
Because on Monday, the Oracle of Omaha, 88, said he would give away $3.6 billion in Berkshire Hathaway stock to five foundations, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which is overseen by Buffett's 'best bud' (at least when the cameras are rolling) Bill Gates.
The gift is Buffett's biggest annual pledge yet.
These are the other beneficiaries of Buffett's generosity, according to CNBC:
The Oracle of Omaha will convert 11,250 of his Class A shares into 16.875 million Class B shares. About 16.8 million of these Class B shares will be donated to five foundations: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, Sherwood Foundation, Howard G. Buffett Foundation and NoVo Foundation, the company said in a statement on Monday.
Here's a breakdown of Buffett's annual giving, courtesy of Bloomberg.
According to FactSet data shared by CNBC, Buffett is Berkshire’s largest shareholder; he owns 37.4% of the firm's Class A shares.
Buffett has never sold any of his Berkshire shares, according to the firm. But he has given away some $34 billion in Berkshire stock since 2006 (when he first pledged to give away nearly all of his wealth to charities), roughly 45% of his holdings. He eventually plans to give away all of his shares during annual grants that will continue until ten years after his estate is settled.
But Buffett isn't the only conspicuously wealthy American giving away large blocks of stock this week: According to Bloomberg, Walmart heir Jim Waltongave gave $1.2 billion of the retailer’s shares last week. Home Depot Inc. co-founder Bernie Marcus said he's planning to give away all $4.5 billion of his fortune before he dies.
Meanwhile, several other Wall Street luminaries, including Jamie Dimon and Ray Dalio, have joined Buffett in calling for higher taxes on the wealthy - something that he has long advocated. At least if President Elizabeth Warren fails in her quest to expropriate the assets of every American billionaire, Buffett has made it clear that he's perfectly comfortable giving away his wealth.