Warren Buffett's annual gift of Berkshire Hathaway Class B shares to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is worth about $1.6 billion dollars this time around.
That's an increase of 28 percent from the value of last year's gift, even though Buffett is donating roughly one million fewer shares. Berkshire B shares are up almost 35 percent over the 12-months since Buffett's previous donation.
In a 2006 letter to Microsoft's Chairman and his wife, Buffett outlined a long-term schedule that has him donating five percent fewer shares each July, when compared to the previous year.
But Buffett told them "you can reasonably expect the value of Berkshire shares to increase, in an irregular manner, by an amount that more than compensates for the decline in the number of shares that will be distributed."
So far, that's turned out to be true for every year except 2009.