Geico’s earnings were hit as well. Last year, when policyholders drove much less during pandemic lockdowns, the company had far fewer claims. With driving returning, claims increased, it said, resulting in earnings of $626 million in the second quarter, down from $2.06 billion a year earlier.
The conglomerate said its manufacturing, service, and retailing operating income jumped to $3 billion from $1.45 billion a year earlier.
“Retail customer volumes increased due to higher customer usage, the favorable impacts of weather and an increase in the average number of customers,” it said.
At the company’s annual investor meeting in May, Mr. Buffet and Berkshire’s vice chairman, Charles T. Munger, talked about the economy’s “red hot” pace, and how different it was from early last year.
Berkshire said the pandemic could still affect its future results, citing “the ability to vaccinate a significant number of people in the U.S. and throughout the world as well as the long-term effect from the pandemic on the demand for certain of our products and services.”