Shares of First Interstate Bancorp., SunTrust Banks Inc., and the Federal National Mortgage Association rose Tuesday on reports that legendary investor Warren Buffett had equity stakes in the companies.
First Interstate confirmed that Mr. Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc. owned 955,000 shares, or more than 1% of all shares outstanding.
The 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which is required of institutional investors, was made in December of 1993.
Mr. Buffett had asked that the information not be disclosed for at least one year after he acquired the stake. The SEC released the information Tuesday.
Mr. Buffett bought shares of the Los Angeles-based bank at $53.50 to $63.75, the company said. The shares surged tktk to tktk on the news of his holding.
SunTrust Inc.'s director of investor relations, James Armstrong, said he did not know of Mr. Buffett's 13F holding, which was reported to be 1.55 million shares, or 1.3% of shares outstanding.
Fannie Mae did not respond to calls seeking comment on Mr. Buffett's reported 567,000-share stake in the company.
SunTrust rose tkt to tkt and Fannie Mae was up tkt to tktk.
Mr. Buffett's reputation is such that the mere disclosure of his much larger stakes in such companies as PNC Banking Corp., Wells Fargo & Co., and First Empire State Corp. helped lift their share prices.
Bank stocks were mixed Tuesday as investors spent most of the day waiting for the Federal Open Market Committee meeting on interest rates. The committee decided not to raise rates.
Analysts continued to voice displeasure with Chase Manhattan Corp.'s inability to lower expenses.
George Salem, an analyst with Gerard Klauer Mattison, downgraded the bank Monday to "hold" from "buy." He had upgraded it just two months ago.
On Tuesday analyst Paul A. Mackey of Dean Witter Reynolds Inc. followed, downgrading the money-center to "neutral" from "buy."
Mr. Salem said Chase's prospectus on its acquisition of some U.S. Trust Corp. businesses indicated first-quarter earnings would be sharply lower. He lowered his own estimate to $1 per share, from $1.20 to $1.25.
For the year he lowered his estimate to $5.10 from $5.40, significantly below most Street estimates, which top $6.
Chase said in its annual report that its efficiency ratio would remain in the mid-60s range, though the company had vowed last year to push the closely watched indicator below 60%. Chase was up tktk at tkt Tuesday.
Also Tuesday, shares of Mitsubishi Bank on the New York Stock Exchange rose tktk to tktk on news of its merger with Bank of Tokyo, creating the world's largest bank.