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Warren Buffett's conglomerate interrupted a beautiful Saturday by reporting quarterly earnings. But we'll forgive him. Because Buffett's empire touches, well, just about every aspect of the U.S. business landscape (okay, maybe not esports...yet), checking out Berkshire's quarterly reports gives us a window into the health of the economy. Quick timeout: If you've never been to Berkshire's website before...here's a taste of what you can expect. Web developers, you might want to submit a résumé. So...how'd it do? At a high level—really darn well. Net income almost tripled, but per Buffett, chalk that up to a new accounting rule that requires you to include unrealized investment gains/losses in net income. Because Berkshire has so many investments, that number can fluctuate wildly. Where you should be looking, he says, is operating income, which jumped 67% (topping expectations). Let's dive a little deeper: Its freight rail business (BNSF Railway) surged due to "general economic growth" generating higher demand for consumer and industrial goods (sand, fertilizer, grain). Insurance (GEICO and others) also rebounded. Underwriting profit came in at $943 million, up from a loss of $22 million last year. One catalyst for all this growth was the corporate tax cut. In Q2, Berkshire paid an effective income tax rate of 20%, down from 28.9% last year. And then there's tech: Tech? Buffett? You bet. Buffett has been steadily increasing his position in Apple. Which, you may have heard, hit $1 trillion in market cap last week. Now, $47.2 billion of Berkshire's ~$180 billion stock portfolio is invested in Apple. Berkshire's other top holdings? American Express, Bank of America, Coca-Cola, and Wells Fargo. Bottom line, courtesy of one analyst: "Strength in Berkshire's portfolio of energy, transportation, service, retailing, and manufacturing businesses...reflect(s) broad U.S. economic strength."