Warren Buffett charitable donations top $51B after latest gift

Billionaire Warren Buffett makes annual charitable donations

Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett’s total donations hit a new high on Wednesday as he disbursed millions of shares of the conglomerate to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and other organizations. 

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, formed in 2000 by its eponymous founders, received a gift of 10.45 million Class B shares, Berkshire said in a press release. The donation was worth over $3.5 billion. 

More than 3.2 million additional shares went to four nonprofits linked to Buffett's family, making this year’s iteration of his annual charitable disbursement total 13.69 million shares of Berkshire Hathaway Class B stock, according to the company. 

Buffett children

Warren Buffett, center, with his children Peter Buffett and Susie Buffett attend the "Becoming Warren Buffett" world premiere at The Museum of Modern Art in New York City on Jan. 19, 2017. (Bennett Raglin/WireImage / Getty Images)

Collectively, the donations brought the amount Buffett has given to the charities to more than $50 billion over the course of about 17 years.

PROFITS JUMP AT WARREN BUFFETT'S COMPANY BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY

Berkshire said 1.05 million shares were given to the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation. The Sherwood Foundation, Howard G. Buffett Foundation and NoVo Foundation, meanwhile, received 2.2 million altogether.

The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, named after Buffett's late wife, works in reproductive health. The Howard G. Buffett Foundation focuses on alleviating hunger, mitigating conflicts and improving public safety. The Sherwood Foundation supports nonprofits in Nebraska, and the NoVo Foundation has initiatives focused on girls and women.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
BRK.A BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY INC. 604,500.00 -3,591.00 -0.59%
BRK.B BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY INC. 400.24 -3.09 -0.77%

"Nothing extraordinary has occurred at Berkshire; a very long runway, simple and generally sound decisions, the American tailwind and compounding effects produced by current wealth," Buffett, 92, said Wednesday. "My will provides that more than 99% of my estate is destined for philanthropic usage."

Berkshire Hathaway shareholders

Berkshire Hathaway shareholders walk by a video screen at the company's annual meeting in Omaha, Nebraska, on May 4, 2013. (Rick Wilking/File Photo / Reuters Photos)

The real-time wealth tracker maintained by Forbes had Buffett’s personal fortune at $117.9 billion as of Thursday afternoon, a net worth that listed him as the fifth-richest person in the world. The outlet also gave a five out of five rating for philanthropy to Buffett, who teamed up with Bill Gates and his now ex-wife Melinda French Gates to create the Giving Pledge. 

Warren Buffett and Bill Gates

Warren Buffett, left, and Bill Gates. (Getty Images / Getty Images)

Buffett has already donated more than half of his Berkshire stock. He still owned more than $112.5 billion, or 15.1%, of Berkshire shares following Wednesday's donations.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
MSFT MICROSOFT CORP. 413.64 -8.26 -1.96%

BILL GATES GIVES WARREN BUFFETT A 92ND BIRTHDAY SHOUTOUT ON INSTAGRAM

The number of shares Buffett donates falls by 5% each year, but this year's dollar amount set a record because Berkshire's stock price has been rising.

GET FOX BUSINESS ON THE GO BY CLICKING HERE

Reuters contributed to this report.