Icahn Up 31%, Announces $3 Billion Apple Stake

Jan 22 2014 | 1:41pm ET

Approaching his 78th birthday, Carl Icahn is showing no signs of slowing down.

The billionaire's investment fund returned 31% last year, more than three times the gain of the average hedge fund, his Icahn Enterprises said in a recent presentation. And Icahn has at last revealed the size of his position in Apple Inc.—and it is now more than $3 billion.

Icahn's fund benefited from huge gains by big holdings such as Netflix, Chesapeake Energy, Forest Laboratories and Herbalife. In addition, Icahn Enterprises stock jumped 158% in 2013.

In 2014, Icahn is betting big on Apple, which is now his largest holding, $1 billion larger than his investment in Forest. Icahn said today on Twitter that he had bought another $500 million in Apple shares over the past two weeks, increasing his stake in the company to more than $3 billion yesterday.

Icahn had not previously disclosed the size of his Apple horde.

"Since tweeting about our large position in $AAPL on Aug 13, when the stock was $468 per share, we've kept buying shares of this 'no brainer,'" he said. Apple shares were trading at about $550 today

"No brainer" it might be, but that doesn't mean Icahn thinks it can't be made better: He has pushed Apple to hold a $150 billion share buyback, and is promoting a non-binding shareholder resolution calling for Apple to launch a $50 billion program right away.

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