Berkshire Hathaway dinged $300m by equity index options

Berkshire Hathaway took a $300 million hit from sold equity index put options in 2018, the first time the derivatives have inflicted losses on the conglomerate in seven years.

The fair value of the options, recorded as a liability on the firm's balance sheet, climbed to $2.5 billion at end-December from $2.2 billion the year prior. In 2017, the contracts produced a gain of $718 million.

The last time the options portfolio dented Berkshire's profits was 2011, when losses hit $1.8 billion. The

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