OSLO: The world's largest sovereign wealth fund, Norway's hefty $1.4 trillion SWF, posted a 9.4 percent return on investment for the first half of the year on Wednesday. The healthy return was driven by a sharp rise in global equities particularly energy, finance and tech stocks.
The fund earned 990 billion Norwegian crowns ($111 billion) in the January-June period, 0.28 percentage points higher than the fund's benchmark index.
“The equity investments had the most positive contribution to the return in the first half of the year, and especially the investments within the sectors of energy and finance,” Chief Executive Nicolai Tangen said in a statement.
“The investments in energy companies returned 19.5 percent,” he added.
The fund invests heavily in U.S. tech giants with the largest individual company investments in Apple, Microsoft, Alphabet, Amazon and Facebook, making up the top five.
The return on the equity investments was 13.7 percent, while fixed income saw a negative 2.0 percent return.
Some 72.4 percent of the fund's investments were in stocks at the end of June, 25.1 percent in bonds, 2.4 percent in unlisted real estate and 0.1 percent in a recently created portfolio of unlisted renewables.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Norwegian government's first cash injection to the central bank to help establish what has since become the world's largest such fund.
Set up to pool the state's revenues from Norway's oil and gas production and prevent the economy from overheating, the fund was then turned into a sovereign wealth fund in 1998.