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Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Jumps 5.1% for Best One-Day Gain in a Year

Warren Buffett
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Warren Buffett

Shares of Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway scored their biggest one-day gain in a year, with a lot of help from today's powerful overall stock market rally.

Berkshire Class B shares, now in the benchmark S&P 500 stock index, closed 5.1 percent higher at $78.23. That's their best day since April 29, 2009.

The six-figure Class A shares jumped by 5.2 percent to finish at $117,290 each, for their biggest one-day gain since March 26, 2009.

Berkshire is still just over 6 percent below its closing highs about two months ago.

Both Berkshire classes outperformed the S&P's 4.4 percent gain today, and they've also been crushing the S&P in year-to-date gains.

Berkshire B is up 19.0 percent since the beginning of the year. Berkshire A is up 18.2 percent.

The S&P has gained 4.0 percent YTD, excluding dividends.

Friday's earnings report from Berkshire, featuring its largest quarterly profit since 2007, appears to have played some part in today's gain.

Barclays Capital analyst Jay Gelb, who just started coverage last month, says in a note today that Berkshire's Q1 results "reflected a faster than anticipated recovery in economically sensitive businesses and valuation appears increasingly attractive" at 1.25 times book value.

Gelb has raised his forecast for 2010 operating earnings to $4.20 from $3.34 per each B share. Gelb's forecast for 2011 has been increased to $4.40 from $3.47.

Current Berkshire stock prices:

Class B:

Class A:

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