Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway purchased US$1 billion of Brazilian neobank Nubank Class A stock in Q4 2021 while selling billions of dollars of stock in Mastercard and Visa.

Fast facts

  • Buffett’s holding company dumped US$1.3 billion and US$1.8 billion from Mastercard and Visa, respectively, according to a Feb. 14 filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
  • Crypto-friendly Nubank is one of Latin America’s most valuable banks, offering products such as a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF).
  • Buffett, one of the world’s richest people, has been one of the most prominent Bitcoin critics, calling the cryptocurrency “rat poison squared” in 2018.
  • With Ukraine-Russia tensions seemingly easing and Buffett’s bet on the neobank, Bitcoin jumped 4.4% in the past 24 hours, with total crypto market capitalization bouncing back to above US$2 trillion, according to CoinGecko data.
  • Berkshire Hathaway invested US$500 million in Nubank’s parent company, Nu Pagamentos SA, last year, before the company went public last December.
  • Both Visa and Mastercard already offer various crypto-linked credit cards, which are growing in popularity.