Market Overview

The Japanese Government's Pension Fund Made A Cool $70 Billion Last Year

The Japanese Government's Pension Fund Made A Cool $70 Billion Last Year

The world's biggest pension fund is now 7.9 trillion yen richer ($70 billion) richer. Japan's Government Pension Investment Fund earned a 5.9 percent return for the one-year period ended March 31, Bloomberg reported.

The fund now holds 144.9 trillion yen worth of assets, including Japan-based stocks and bonds and foreign investments. Japanese shares outperformed with a 15 percent return over the fiscal year versus 14 percent in overseas stocks. But the value of the yen rose 1.1 percent against the U.S. dollar, which erased part of the gains in non-Japanese investments when converted to the local currency.

Japanese bonds on the other hand lost 0.9 percent which does mark a better performance versus non-Japanese bonds that lost 3.2 percent.

Meanwhile, the fund increased its holdings in cash from 5.1 percent a year ago to 8.9 percent, Bloomberg added. But the fund is committed to putting the cash to use and invest in other assets, including a potential investment in American infrastructure projects.

Major Facebook Shareholder

Japan's government pension fund also happens to be a major shareholder of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ: FB), Nikkei Asian Review reported. The fund holds $2.85 billion worth of Facebook's stock and is the fourth largest foreign holding.

The fund's biggest international holding is Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) with a dollar amount value that's more than twice that of Facebook.

During the year the fiscal year the fund also added to its positions in Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE: WFC),, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN), and Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE: XOM). Of particular note, the fund increased its exposure in China's Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE: BABA) by nearly 85 percent to 127 billion yen.

On the other hand, the fund lowered its stake in Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ), and General Electric Company (NYSE: GE).

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