Prem Watsa

Prem Watsa

Last Update: 08-12-2016

Number of Stocks: 27
Number of New Stocks: 4

Total Value: $1,032 Mil
Q/Q Turnover: 1%

Countries: USA
Details: Top Buys | Top Sales | Top Holdings  Embed:

Prem Watsa Watch

  • Interview With George Athanassakos

    Prem Watsa - Interview With George Athanassakos

    I had the pleasure of having a brief conversation with George Athanassakos, value investor and director of the Ben Graham Center for Value Investing, as he was overseas on business. We talked about his favorite companies, what he looks for in a company and his favorite books, as well as his disciplined appropach.


  • Prem Watsa Increases Stake in Canadian Media Company to 27%

    Prem Watsa - Prem Watsa Increases Stake In Canadian Media Company To 27%

    Investor Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio) bought a large chunk of Canada-based media company and owner of Canada’s largest daily newspaper Torstar Corp. (TSX:TS.B) that increased his ownership to 27.4% of the company, he reported Thursday.

    Watsa, whose investment vehicle Fairfax Financial (TSX:FFH) often draws comparisons to Warren Buffett (Trades, Portfolio)’s Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A)(NYSE:BRK.B), acquired 3,539,400 of Torstar’s Class B shares, equivalent to 4.9% of those outstanding. Watsa acquired the shares in the midst of their 40% slide this year from a price of $2.78. He purchased 939,400 of the shares on June 3 at a price of $1.77, and 2.6 million Thursday when the price dropped to $1.40.


  • Prem Watsa Picks 4 Tiny New Positions in 2nd Quarter

    Prem Watsa - Prem Watsa Picks 4 Tiny New Positions In 2nd Quarter

    Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio) who runs the insurance conglomerate Fairfax Financial added four very small positions to his portfolio in the second quarter, he disclosed Friday.

    Watsa has a portfolio valued at $1.03 billion with 27 positions, though BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) makes up a full third of it.


  • Prem Watsa Boosts Money-Losing Hedges on Continued Worry About Market Crash

    Prem Watsa - Prem Watsa Boosts Money-Losing Hedges On Continued Worry About Market Crash

    Canada’s best Warren Buffett (Trades, Portfolio) analog, Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio), spoke this week on his “concern about the financial markets” that caused him to increase his hedges on his common stocks even as he posted millions in losses in the portfolio for the first half of 2016.

    Watsa, founder of insurance conglomerate Fairfax Financial (TSX:FFH), increased his equity hedge ratio to 115% as of June 30, from 88.1% on Dec. 31. A financial statement attributed the increase to added short positions in stocks and stock index total return swaps, along with unrealized depreciation of equity and equity-related holdings.


  • Prem Watsa Buys ICICI Bank, Leucadia National

    Prem Watsa,Ken Fisher,Jim Simons,Sarah Ketterer,Ho - Prem Watsa Buys ICICI Bank, Leucadia National

    Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio) manages a portfolio of 29 stocks with total value of $1.126 billion. The following are his most heavily weighted trades of the first quarter:

    The guru bought 1,500,000 shares in ICICI Bank Ltd ADR (IBN) with an impact of 0.95% on the portfolio.


  • This Company Was Prepared for the Brexit

    Prem Watsa,Warren Buffett - This Company Was Prepared For The Brexit

    As the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 610 points (3.39%) after the Brexit announcement, Fairfax Financial (FFH) was up 1.64% in the U.S. market and 3.55% in the Canadian market. If the market continues its turbulence, I would expect more of the same from the company led by value investing guru Prem Watsa.

    Although Watsa comes from the Benjamin Graham school of thought on value investing, he also prides himself on having his company excel through times of crisis such as the financial crisis of 2007-2009. Fairfax Financial is an $11.9 billion market cap insurance company headquartered in Toronto with operations throughout the world. Following the methods of Warren Buffett, chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A, BRK.B), Watsa invests the company’s float in equities using value investing principles. For insurance companies, the float is the amount of money on hand at any given moment that an insurer has collected in insurance premiums but has not paid out in claims. What makes Fairfax Financial different is that Watsa will hedge against catastrophic events that he foresees.


  • BlackBerry May Have Finally Turned the Corner

    PRIMECAP Management,Prem Watsa,Jim Simons,Kahn Bro - BlackBerry May Have Finally Turned The Corner

    I start this note with a quote from the English economist A.C. Pigou: "The error of optimism dies in the crisis, but in dying it gives birth to an error of pessimism. This new error is born, not an infant, but a giant."

    Blackberry logo


  • Ray Dalio Sells Viacom and Exelon, Trims Apple and Pepsi

    Ray Dalio,Jim Simons,Jeremy Grantham,Prem Watsa,Jo - Ray Dalio Sells Viacom And Exelon, Trims Apple And Pepsi

    Ray Dalio (Trades, Portfolio) founded Greenwich, Connecticut-based hedge fund Bridgewater Associates in 1975. Now it has more than $165 billion under management. During the first quarter he sold shares in the following stocks:

    The guru closed his stake in BCE Inc. (BCE) with an impact of -0.39% on the portfolio.


  • High Dividend Yield Companies Attract Gurus

    Warren Buffett,Chris Davis,Prem Watsa,Jerome Dodso - High Dividend Yield Companies Attract Gurus

    The All-in-One Screener listed Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE:HPQ) and International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM) as two high dividend yield computer hardware stocks. Due to these high dividend yields, many gurus have very large positions in these stocks.

    Screening for big dividends


  • Prem Watsa, Who Fears Once-in-a-Century Financial Storm, Buys 7 New Stocks

    Prem Watsa - Prem Watsa, Who Fears Once-in-a-Century Financial Storm, Buys 7 New Stocks

    Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio) has hedged his portfolio for several years, which has muted his returns but protected his investors from the possibility of a once-in-a-century economic disaster.

    From 2011 to 2015, Watsa’s Fairfax Financial Holdings (TSX:FFH), an insurance conglomerate and investment vehicle styled like Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A)(NYSE:BRK.B), had an average total return on investments of 3%, its lowest period to date because of hedges. Since its founding, Fairfax’s book value increased at a compounded rate of 20.4% and its stock at 19.4% per year.


  • Helmerich & Payne, MasterCard Have Growing Dividend Yields

    Prem Watsa, Chuck Royce, Warren Buffett - Helmerich & Payne, MasterCard Have Growing Dividend Yields

    Thanks to GuruFocus’ All-in-One Screener, I want to highlight stocks that have a growing dividend yield with sustainable payout ratio. This sustainability is confirmed by long-term company profitability and a very strong financial situation.

    Helmerich & Payne Inc. (HP) has a dividend yield that has grown by 81% over the past five years. The yield is now 4.81% with a payout ratio of 127%. The average ROA of the last five years has been 10.84% and the average ROE during the period was 15.8%.


  • The Art of Piggybacking

    David Einhorn, Mason Hawkins, Prem Watsa - The Art Of Piggybacking

    Piggybacking has been a topic that has been discussed frequently these days. Fellow writer the Science of Hitting’s recent article is quite illuminating and definitely worth reading. Inspired by him, I wrote this article to share my observations and thoughts on this subject.

    When I first started investing, I piggybacked many gurus and very frequently. I remember the days when I saw David Einhorn (Trades, Portfolio) or Mason Hawkins (Trades, Portfolio) initiating a position in a stock, and within a few hours I became an owner that the same stock. When I saw Exco (NYSE:XCO) was bought by Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio), Howard Marks (Trades, Portfolio) and Wilbur Ross (Trades, Portfolio), I put a good amount of money in it without even finishing up reading the 10-K.


  • Prem Watsa Buys 8 Million Shares of Exco Resources

    Prem Watsa,Warren Buffett - Prem Watsa Buys 8 Million Shares Of Exco Resources

    Guru Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio) added 8 million shares of Exco Resources Inc. (NYSE:XCO) to his portfolio in the fourth quarter.

    Exco Resources is an independent oil and natural gas company that was originally incorporated in October 1955. Exco engages in the exploitation, exploration, acquisition, development and production of onshore U.S. oil and natural gas properties with a focus on shale resource plays. The company's principal operations are conducted in certain key U.S. oil and natural gas areas including Texas, Louisiana and the Appalachia region.


  • Prem Watsa's Fairfax Financial 2015 Annual Report

    Prem Watsa - Prem Watsa's Fairfax Financial 2015 Annual Report

    To Our Shareholders:

    Fairfax had another excellent year in 2015 even though it was not obvious in the numbers, as book value per share increased by only 4.5% (including the $10(1) per share dividend paid in 2015) to $403 per share because of our very cautious view of financial markets. All of our concerns about the financial markets may be coming to a head in early 2016, as I write this report to you. More on that later.


  • Both Insiders and Gurus Are Buying These 3 Companies

    Prem Watsa, Jim Simons, Steven Cohen, Ray Dalio - Both Insiders And Gurus Are Buying These 3 Companies

    GuruFocus has various tools and screeners available to make the quest for your next great investment a little bit more efficient. A tool that I am fond is the Double Buy screen. By employing it you can easily screen a list of stocks that have been tapped by both gurus and insiders. Both types of events tend to trigger my interest, but when they occur simultaneously, it is time to pay close attention. I regularly review the list, and today I want to highlight three stocks from the top 10 that really stand out to me because of the combined buying data.

    EXCO Resources (NYSE:XCO)


  • Warren Buffett's Ratio Shows Market Is Overvalued

    Warren Buffett, Prem Watsa - Warren Buffett's Ratio Shows Market Is Overvalued

    Many investors would love to predict the market to know whether the market is on the uptrend or downtrend. It’s really hard to do, and I personally think it’s impossible to predict the market, especially in a short-term. However, it is possible and useful to have a general idea of whether the overall market is overvalued, fairly valued or undervalued. We don’t need to know the absolute number to determine the state of the market, but we can have the feel for it. Benjamin Graham, the father of value investing, has said: “You don’t have to know a man’s exact weight to know that he’s fat.”

    Warren Buffett (Trades, Portfolio) has given us the ratio that he uses to determine the attractiveness of general market. It’s the ratio of total market capitalization of all U.S. public traded companies to the country's GNP. Buffett has said “The ratio has certain limitations in telling you what you need to know. Still, it is probably the best single measure of where valuations stand at any given moment.” He recommended buying into the market when the ratio falls into the 70% to 80% area. But if investors buy into the market when the ratio reaches 200%, like the market condition in 1999, investors are “playing with fire.”


  • Prem Watsa Increases Portfolio Hedges to Protect Against Market Drop

    Prem Watsa - Prem Watsa Increases Portfolio Hedges To Protect Against Market Drop

    Investor Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio) has increased his portfolio hedges up to 100% of his equity investment portfolio since the start of the year to protect against volatility, he said Thursday.

    The hedges represent an increase from an 88.1% equity hedge Watsa, the founder of insurance conglomerate Fairfax Financial Holdings (TSX:FFH) in Canada, had in place at year-end. The increase consisted of $938 million in short positions in equity and equity index total return swaps. Watsa said he made the move “in response to the significant appreciation in equity market valuations and uncertainty in the economy.”


  • Prem Watsa's 5 Largest New Buys

    Prem Watsa - Prem Watsa's 5 Largest New Buys

    Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio), whose investing of the float of his Canadian insurance conglomerate has drawn comparisons to Warren Buffett (Trades, Portfolio) and Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A)(NYSE:BRK.B), revealed the new fourth-quarter investments he made on Friday.

    Watsa bet on seven new companies, the largest of which were Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. (NYSE:TRQ), Eros International Plc (NYSE:EROS), Solera Holdings Inc. (NYSE:SLH), Precision Castparts Corp. (NYSE:PCP) and RealD Inc. (NYSE:RLD). He had 33 positions in total, valued at $1.2 billion.


  • Prem Watsa Sells Polypore, Advent Software

    Prem Watsa - Prem Watsa Sells Polypore, Advent Software

    Fairfax was founded in 1985 by the present chairman and CEO Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio), and is headquartered in Toronto, Canada. The following are Watsa’s most heavily weighted trades during the third quarter.

    The firm sold out its stake in Polypore International Inc. (PPO) with an impact of 0.15% on the portfolio.


  • Are Tech Stocks Prem Watsa Called ‘Speculative’ Worse at Close of Year?

    Prem Watsa - Are Tech Stocks Prem Watsa Called ‘Speculative’ Worse At Close Of Year?

    Prem Watsa (Trades, Portfolio) has a top holding in cell phone maker BlackBerry Ltd. (NASDAQ:BBRY), but early in 2015 he said many major companies of the high tech industry were in speculation territory.

    Watsa, the founder of rapidly growing, Berkshire Hathaway-style Fairfax Financial Holdings (TSX:FFH) is a conservative investor who buys low-priced, low-valuation stocks. In the past several years, some of his standout investments included gutsy bets on the Bank of Ireland and in careening Greek companies. He panned tech stocks in his annual letter this year though, listing companies he viewed as overvalued in a table.


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