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Sovereign Wealth Funds Briefing - Archive | March, 2013

UK retail giant on Qatar’s radar?

Posted on 18 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A news report by London’s The Sun newspaper has revealed that Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund may be eyeing UK retail chain Marks & Spencer in deal worth estimated to be USD 12 billion.
The retail giant boasts about 1000 global stores, also maintaining presence in the UAE and Saudi Arabia. Marks & Spencer employs about 80,000 people all over the world. Latest financial results of the company show a 9.7 percent decline in profit to the six months up to the end of September 2012. However, sales have increased by 0.9 percent to GBP £4.7 billion during this period………………………………………..Full Article: Source

M&S in spotlight on report of Qatari bid interest

Posted on 18 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Marks & Spencer was at the centre of fresh bid speculation on Sunday, with takeover talk resurfacing after a year of weak trading and a flat share price. According to The Sunday Times, the Qatar Investment Authority, the Gulf state’s sovereign wealth fund, wants to assemble a consortium to mount an 8 billion pounds takeover of Britain’s biggest clothing retailer, which also sells homewares and food.
The newspaper cited senior City sources as saying the QIA, which is already a 26 percent shareholder in Britain’s No. 3 grocer J Sainsbury, has approached several large private equity houses, including CVC Capital Partners, to gauge their interest in participating, and has spoken to lenders about financing an offer………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign fund invests GBP100mln in Greenko

Posted on 18 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A Singaporean sovereign wealth fund has invested £100m in Greenko, in a move that will expand the Aim-quoted clean energy specialist’s power generation projects in India.
An affiliate of the Government of Singapore Investment Corp (GIC) has agreed to sink £100m into Greenko’s Mauritius division – funds that will be deployed into Indian utility-scale wind farms and hydro projects………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC’s Teo says rising rates might become problem for Japan

Posted on 18 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Growing interest burden on Japan’s government in case of rising interest rates is “one of the contradictions or unanswered questions of Abenomics,” GIC chief economist Leslie Teo says at conference in Singapore. *“How would the Japanese government pay, given the amount of debt they have?”
Leslie Teo is chief economist and director economics and investment strategy at Singapore’s state fund, Government of Singapore Investment Corp. GIC is world’s eight-biggest sovereign wealth fund and manages about $248 billion, according to Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute……………………………………….Full Article: Source

China’s captains of capital

Posted on 18 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

With China’s parliament voting on Saturday, important appointments were made in the fields of finance and economics. Zhou Xiaochuan was reappointed central bank governor, becoming the longest-serving chief of the central bank. Lou Jiwei, the former head of China Investment Corp, China’s sovereign wealth fund, will now take over as Minister of Finance.
Gao Hucheng, China’s chief trade representative, will run the Ministry of Commerce. Xu Shaoshi, who formerly led the Ministry of Land and Resources, is the newly appointed head of the National Development and Reform Commission………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Azeri $34 bln fund to remake holdings after Aussie, gold

Posted on 18 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Azerbaijan’s State Oil Fund is weighing expansion into new currencies to reflect the impact of faster growing economies after starting to buy Australian dollars and gold last year, its chief investment officer said.
With $34.1 billion in assets on Jan. 1, equivalent to almost 50 percent of the Caspian Sea nation’s economy, the fund, known as Sofaz, has broadened its mandate to keep as much as 5 percent of its assets in Australian dollars, Russian rubles and Turkish lira, Israfil Mammadov said in a March 13 interview in the capital, Baku………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Khazanah bids for GE’s $1.8 bln Thai bank stake

Posted on 15 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Malaysia’s Khazanah Nasional Bhd is seeking to buy General Electric’s $1.8 billion stake in Bank of Ayudhya (BAY), sources familiar with the matter said, pitting it against Japanese banking giant Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG).
Khazanah’s bid for GE’s 25.3 percent stake came as a surprise, the sources said, declining to be identified as the information was not public. The proposed acquisition would be the largest purchase of an overseas banking asset by Khazanah as it plays catch-up with Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings Pvt Ltd . The Malaysian sovereign wealth fund currently manages a portfolio that is just a quarter of the $158 billion of assets held by its neighbouring rival………………………………….Full Article: Source

Qatar’s SWF takes unconventional approach to investing

Posted on 15 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The decision of Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund to seed a publicly-listed investment firm on the Qatari stock exchange is not only an interesting development in asset management in the region, but also one that says a lot about the organization’s willingness to open itself up for additional scrutiny.
Qatar Holding - the company backed by sovereign wealth from the Qatar Investment Authority - is to put USD 3 billion into the new investment vehicle listed on the Qatar stock exchange, which is to be called Doha Global………………………………….Full Article: Source

Qatar richest country in the world: IIF

Posted on 15 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Qatar retained its ranking as the world’s richest country in 2012, with its per capita income soaring to an incredible $106,000, while Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), with assets of $115bn, was ranked 12th among sovereign wealth funds in the world.
As for QIA, the UK-based TheCityUK ranked it 12th among the world’s sovereign wealth funds in terms of asset size in the year 2012. The assets of the QIA totalled $115bn. TheCityUK said in a report titled ‘Sovereign Wealth Funds’ released this month that the profile of sovereign wealth funds had risen considerably since 2007………………………………….Full Article: Source

QIA’s Hassad Food eyes new investments in Pakistan

Posted on 15 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Qatar has plans to expand its food security options in Pakistan and the state-owned corporation, Hassad Food, has opened an office in Lahore, Pakistan’s ambassador Mohamed Sarfraz A Khanzada said. Hassad Food was established by the Qatar Investment Authority in 2008 with a capital of $1bn to secure food supplies through agricultural investments worldwide.
It was after the then prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani’s visit to Qatar in February 2012, Hassad Food showed interest in making investments in Pakistan. Khanzada said Qatar was already getting rice from Pakistan. In April, 2012, Hassad Food had announced the launch of “Nathry Extra Long Basmati Rice” that mainly came from Pakistan………………………………….Full Article: Source

Gulf SWFs account for 110pct of region’s GDP

Posted on 15 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The collective assets of Sovereign Wealth Funds, or SWFs, in the GCC surged to an all time high of around 1.7 trillion at the end of 2012, boosted by mounting fiscal surpluses on the back of high oil prices, Moody’s Investors Service said in a new report.
The London-based rating agency said in a report that the assets controlled by SWFs in the GCC climbed by nearly 700 billion from their level of around 1 trillion at the end of 2007. Moody’s observed that the GCC economies have benefited from large foreign-exchange inflows driven by oil revenues, adding that some of the windfall has been spent through the governments’ fiscal accounts while the rest was placed in SWFs, reinforcing their financial strength………………………………….Full Article: Source

SWFs to boost property, infrastructure exposure

Posted on 15 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth funds will increase their allocations to real estate and infrastructure in an attempt to diversify portfolios currently over-allocated to bank equities, according to a report from TheCityUK, a body representing the UK financial services sector.
Marko Maslakovic, senior manager for economic research, said the underperformance of financial services sector investments made during the financial crisis had left sovereign wealth funds with negative domestic publicity………………………………….Full Article: Source

Sovereign funds’ assets to gain 60pct by 2016, UBS’s Castelli says

Posted on 14 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth funds will increase their assets by 60 percent over the next three years, bolstered by rising income from commodities and exports, according to UBS AG.
State funds will manage about $8.6 trillion in 2016, up from $5.3 trillion now, according to Massimiliano Castelli, head of strategy at Global Sovereign Markets, the unit of UBS Global Asset Management that services sovereign institutions worldwide. Sovereign investors will also add more assets in emerging markets and cut holdings denominated in currencies such as the euro and the Japanese yen, he said…………………………………Full Article: Source

Successful sovereign wealth fund needs to have long term view

Posted on 14 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Former Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC) chief investment officer Ng Kok Song says sovereign wealth funds should look at investing in the long term. A successful sovereign wealth fund needs to have a long-term investment horizon.
An industry study expects assets of sovereign wealth funds to grow about 8 percent from US$5.2 trillion to US$5.6 trillion by the end of 2013. Sharing his vast experience in managing investments for a sovereign wealth fund, Mr Ng, who retired as GIC’s chief investment officer in February, says sovereign fund investments should be evaluated over a period of about 20 years to be meaningful…………………………………Full Article: Source

GIC adviser says fund’s investments free from political meddling

Posted on 14 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Government of Singapore Investment Corp., which manages more than $100 billion of reserves, operates without “political meddling” from the city-state’s authorities, an adviser said.
The sovereign wealth fund’s biggest investments include Citigroup Inc. (C) and UBS AG, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The investments are made for the long term, said Ng Kok Song, who retired as GIC’s group chief investment officer in January…………………………………Full Article: Source

GIC to post nominal returns in U.S. dollars to match benchmarks

Posted on 14 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Government of Singapore Investment Corp., which manages more than $100 billion of reserves, said it stopped publishing its nominal returns in the local currency because they should be compared with global benchmarks.
The annual report should focus on GIC’s primary mandate of achieving its so-called real rate of return, or subtracting the global inflation rate from the nominal performance, according to Josephine Teo, minister of state for finance. The fund stopped publishing the nominal rate of return converted to Singapore dollars three years ago, she said…………………………………Full Article: Source

Josephine Teo explains GIC’s omission on nominal returns in Singdollar

Posted on 14 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Government Investment Corporation’s Report on the Management of the Government’s Portfolio stopped publishing its nominal returns converted to Singapore dollars three years ago.
Replying to a question in Parliament on Wednesday, Minister of State for Finance Josephine Teo said this is to avoid confusion when comparisons are made with other fund managers or global market indices…………………………………Full Article: Source

Why GIC won’t provide full portfolio disclosure

Posted on 14 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) hold a major advantage over central banks in that they don’t have to worry too much about asset liquidity – and yet some do not exploit this benefit, says Ng Kok-Song, chairman of investments at Singapore’s biggest state fund.
Being able to invest in illiquid assets and for the very long term – and hence being able to act at appropriate times in contrarian fashion – can help improve returns significantly, he notes…………………………………Full Article: Source

Angolan fund to focus on infrastructure

Posted on 14 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

José Filomeno de Sousa dos Santos, the son of Angola’s President José Eduardo dos Santos, has just swept in and out of South Africa to market the country’s new $5 billion (R45bn) sovereign wealth fund, as well as to talk to fund managers and investors here.
Interviewed at the Mount Nelson Hotel, while he attended a conference of African countries that also have sovereign wealth funds, he was asked whether South Africa should follow the Angolan example. He replied that it was created to promote growth and improve socio-economic conditions in his country, but “South Africa is advanced in terms of industrialisation”…………………………………Full Article: Source

Norway punts big on W. Australia

Posted on 14 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The world’s biggest sovereign wealth fund last year bulked up on a welter of WA companies, including Atlas Iron and Gryphon Minerals, as it cut back in Europe in favour of more attractive investment destinations. With more than 4 trillion kroner ($679 billion) of assets, Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global is represented in every corner of the world, including Australia where it doubled its holdings of equities and bonds last year.
The fund’s latest update shows it held 261 Australian-listed stocks worth 53.3 billion kroner at the end of December.The WA-held stocks included Ausdrill, Navitas, Seven West Media, Fleetwood, NRW and Aspen, with most of the holdings below the one per cent mark…………………………………Full Article: Source

Norway opens a window on its global investment strategy

Posted on 14 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

On March 8 when Yngve Slyngstad announced the annual results of Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, he did more than unveil a routine set of numbers. The chief executive of The Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM), which manages the Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG), was also revealing the first results following what he called a “substantial” change in the $680-billion oil fund’s investment strategy last year.
“While in 2011 the fund invested NOK 150 billion ($27 billion) of the year’s capital transfers in European equities, in 2012 the fund invested nearly an equivalent amount in emerging bond markets”, Slyngstad observed…………………………………Full Article: Source

Which country is the SWFs’ sweetheart?

Posted on 14 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Investments in the United States have made up a fifth of all sovereign wealth fund (SWF) capital placements since 2005, research has shown. TheCityUK, an organisation for financial businesses in the United Kingdom, found the US had been the favoured home for investment capital over the past seven years. The UK accounted for one sixth of these investors’ capital, with China, France, Switzerland, Germany, and Qatar other important destinations.
As an example, in February, the manager of the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, the Norway Pension Fund-Global announced a $1.2 billion agreement with TIAA-CREF to create a joint US real estate venture…………………………………Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth funds to hit record $5.6 trln by year end-study

Posted on 13 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) are set to see their assets grow to $5.6 trillion by the end of 2013, a study found, a sum more than double British GDP and underscoring their status as the world’s wealthiest investors.
SWFs, state-owned vehicles such as the Qatar Investment Authority which manage windfall revenues for future generations, have become key global market players after the financial crisis, spending an estimated $90 billion buying up stakes in Western banks including Barclays Plc for instance………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Asia accounts for 39pct of $5.2tr in sovereign assets

Posted on 13 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth fund assets increased by 8% last year to reach a record $5.2 trillion, with Asian entities accounting for $2 trillion, or 39% of the total, according to figures by the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute and a UK financial sector body.
China has the biggest share of SWF capital by country, with $1.49 trillion, accounting for 29% of the global total of sovereign wealth. It is up from $1.14 trillion last year and is nearly twice as much as the $816 billion held by United Arab Emirates, the second-largest pool of SWF assets………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GCC SWF assets put at $1.7trn

Posted on 13 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Strong oil prices have sharply widen the fiscal surpluses in Gulf hydrocarbon producers and this boosted the assets of their government funds to an all time high of around $1.7 trillion at the end of 2012, according to Moody’s investor service.
The assets controlled by sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) were nearly $700 billion higher than their level of around $one trillion at the end of 2007, the rating agency said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway fund lifts Aussie debt holdings, raises BHP stake

Posted on 13 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, the world’s largest, almost doubled its investments in Australian bonds and equities last year, boosting sovereign debt fourfold and adding provincial debt securities.
The 4.08 trillion kroner ($715 billion) Government Pension Fund Global held 18.1 billion kroner of Australian federal government securities as of Dec. 31, according to a report released on March 8, up from 4.11 billion kroner a year earlier……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Norway’s oil fund doubles up down under

Posted on 13 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s $US712 billion ($690bn) oil fund increased its holdings in both Australian equities and fixed-income assets after being lured by higher yields down under. Among its major holdings is a 3 per cent stake in BHP Billiton, the world’s biggest mining company, that’s worth $2.27bn at current prices.
The appetite of global investors for Australian-dollar investments continues to rise after the country emerged from the financial crisis in better shape than many of its developed-market peers. Central banks in Russia, Switzerland and elsewhere have joined sovereign wealth funds and pension plans in increasing their holdings of Australian assets………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Phillipines: Sovereign wealth fund under consideration

Posted on 13 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Economic managers are studying the possibility of setting up a Philippine sovereign wealth fund to maximize returns from the country’s foreign exchange holdings. “As I understand, the national government is conducting a study on the possible operations of a sovereign wealth fund,” central bank Governor Amando M. Tetangco, Jr. said at the sidelines of yesterday’s Philippine Investment Forum.
Finance Secretary Cesar V. Purisima confirmed that the plan was being considered, although he said the review remained in the preliminary stages. “We haven’t brought up the matter with [President Benigno S. C. Aquino III] yet. So far, it’s just look, see, study and evaluate,” Mr. Purisima said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Temasek holding invests in HealthCare Global Enterprises

Posted on 13 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

HealthCare Global Enterprises Limited, (HCG), the specialist in cancer care, has announced that Temasek Holdings, a Singapore based investment company, has become a shareholder in the company.
Temasek joins existing investors, Premji Invest, an investment entity owned by Azim Premji, and Milestone Religare in a primary equity issuance by the company, a statement by HCG said. Evolvence India Life Sciences Fund, which has been an investor in HCG since 2007, will be exiting their investment to Temasek in the company………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC to invest $50mln in Virgin Mobile MEA to fund expansion

Posted on 13 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Virgin Mobile Middle East & Africa is set to receive $50 million in funding from Gulf Investment Corporation, as the telco looks to expand in Saudi Arabia and North Africa, according to the Dubai-based company’s chief executive.
The mobile virtual network operator, which operates in South Africa, Oman and Jordan, is currently putting together a proposal to win one of three MVNO licences set to be offered in Saudi Arabia, and the GIC investment will help fund potential expansion into the kingdom, Mikkel Vinter told Zawya Dow Jones on Tuesday………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Libya wealth fund seeking SocGen explanation on $1 bln loss

Posted on 13 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Libya, whose sovereign wealth fund declined by at least $4 billion in value over the past four years, said it’s demanding an explanation from Societe Generale SA (GLE) on how it lost about $1 billion on derivative contracts.
“We have been in contact a number of times but have not received a satisfactory answer,” Mohsen Derregia, the outgoing chairman and chief executive officer of the fund, said in an interview from Tripoli. “We are pursuing this matter further.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Libya’s sovereign wealth fund “in limbo” after sacking

Posted on 13 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The outgoing head of Libya’s sovereign wealth fund said a decision to sack him has left its restructuring plans and the pursuit of compensation for investment losses in limbo, potentially costing the country millions. Late last month Prime Minister Ali Zeidan said Mohsen Derregia, head of the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), would be replaced under a government policy to remove those who performed poorly in their jobs.
In an exchange highlighting the disarray of state institutions some 18 months after Muammar Gaddafi’s ouster, Derregia took his dismissal to court, saying it had come out of the blue and that he had yet to be contacted over a handover………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Would You Please Yield?

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

At the start of 2010, the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund had no property investments to speak of. Three years later, Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global, which manages the oil-rich nation’s wealth through Norges Bank Investment Management, has committed around $6.7 billion to property. The investments are mainly focused on prime office and retail space in major European capitals, and Norges Bank has said it plans to spend billions more over the next decade.
The fund manager has stated that it will invest up to 5% of its $690 billion fund in real estate by 2020, coinciding with a corresponding decrease in its bond holdings. It declined to comment for this article………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth funds move to real estate investments

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth funds around the world are moving to diversify their portfolios, according to TheCityUK’s Sovereign Wealth Funds 2013 report, with deal transaction sizes getting smaller and emerging markets accounting for a growing share of investments.
The trend towards diversification has resulted in a 30% increase in investment into real estate globally by SWFs over the past twelve months, with information technology and consumer goods also seeing rises in allocation. The allocation increase is largely down to low bond yields in some developed countries and the volatility in equity markets………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign funds keep pouring into London’s real estate assets

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth funds are forecast to reach a record $5.6 trillion in assets this year, with Britain revealed as the second most popular destination for investment, according to research.
TheCityUK’s Sovereign Wealth Funds 2013 report revealed that total assets held by these funds increased for the fourth year running in 2012 to $5.2 trillion and predicts these will grow a further $400bn this year. Investment into global property jumped by 30 per cent last year to $10bn as sovereign wealth funds sought to diversify their portfolios………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway fund flees currencies tainted by stimulus addiction

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s $713 billion sovereign wealth fund is turning away from the world’s biggest currencies and their debt-laden governments as policy makers undermine their exchange rates through unprecedented stimulus measures.
The Government Pension Fund Global, the world’s largest wealth fund, cut its holdings in French and U.K. government bonds by almost half last year as it raised its share of government bonds in emerging-market currencies to 10 percent of its fixed-income holdings by adding investments in Turkey, Russia and Taiwan………………………………………..Full Article: Source

How Norway’s SWF beat the street – without external managers

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Back in 2012 the operator of the Norwegian government’s pension fund axed many of its external mandates, opting to rely instead on in-house expertise. One year on, it’s delivered its second best return ever. Here’s how it did it.
The operator of the Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global - the world’s second largest sovereign wealth fund - last year axed its externally managed mandates, cutting assets run by third parties within the $667 billion fund to the lowest level since the fund’s launch in 1998………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norwegian oil fund dumps UK gilts

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Norwegian oil fund, one of the world’s biggest investors, dumped almost half of its holdings in UK gilts last year amid concerns about mounting Government debt levels and money printing.
Norges Bank Investment Management, which has $713bn of assets and is the biggest sovereign wealth fund in the world, said it sold down its holding in UK debt from 110bn Kroner (£12.9bn) at the end of 2011 to just 60bn Kroner at the end of 2012………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s wealth fund back on top form in 2012

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, one of the world’s biggest investors, grew by around $100 billion (€76.9 billion) in 2012, sealing one of its best years on record as it benefited from the striking upturn by stock markets.
Known as the ‘oil fund’, it invests revenue from Norway’s lucrative oil industry for the country’s future. It is now worth around $710 billion (€546.6 billion), 40 per cent more than the value of the entire Norwegian economy………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oil fund to start flexing its muscle

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, popularly known as the “Oil Fund,” has reported another year of strong growth and impressive returns amounting to its next-best result ever. Now the fund’s bosses reportedly want to take a more active role in the companies where the fund is a major investor.
The fund logged an overall return of 13.4 percent in 2012, broken down by 18.1 percent on its stock portfolio, 6.7 percent on its interest-bearing investments and 5.8 percent on its real estate holdings. As some Norwegian media reported, the enormous fund used to save up Norway’s oil wealth for future generations earned an average of NOK 1.2 billion every single day last year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Angola wealth fund looks to invest in Southern Africa

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The son of Angolan President Jose Eduardo dos Santos says the country’s new $5bn sovereign wealth fund will look for investment opportunities in South Africa and the region as it bids to grow the returns that are key to improving infrastructure in the oil-rich nation.
Jose Filomeno de Sousa dos Santos, director for strategy at the Sovereign Wealth Fund of Angola — better known by its Portuguese acronym FSDEA — says the fund’s priority is to invest in industries, manufacturing and infrastructure. It is keen to put that cash in Angolan projects, as well as those of key ally South Africa, and possibly western economies………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Middle East sovereigns show growing divergence, oil to average $112/b

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

All of Moody’s-rated sovereigns in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) have been affected by the global crisis and Arab Spring to varying degrees, but a clear divergence has emerged over recent years, with stable sovereign credit ratings among oil-rich countries and downward rating pressure facing those countries most affected by the Arab Spring, Moody’s Investors Service said in a new report.
Upheavals in Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Syria and Yemen have shaken the region’s social and political landscape, and conditions remain unsettled to varying degrees in the countries that experienced regime change. At the same time, oil-rich countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have ramped up social welfare spending to pre-empt discontent and address longstanding needs………………………………………..Full Article: Source

India seeks Kuwaiti investment in infra

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

India on Monday impressed upon Kuwait which has Sovereign Wealth Fund of USD 300 billion to look at huge investment opportunity in the infrastructure sector. The issue was raised by Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma during his meeting with Kuwaiti Minister for Amiri Dewan Affairs Sheikh Nasser Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al Sabah, an official said.
Kuwait has a Sovereign Fund of over USD 300 billion which is growing by USD 15-25 billion every year. The fund is managed by Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA). Sharma informed him that during the 12th Five-Year plan (2012-2017), India plans to spend around USD 1 trillion on infrastructure………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Australian Future Fund chief Burgess talks total-portfolio investing

Posted on 12 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Managing director and president of Australia’s Future Fund, Mark Burgess leads a dynamic sovereign wealth fund with A$82.4 billion ($85.1 billion) in assets and a reputation for savvy risk management. Launched in May 2006 with just A$18 billion, Future Fund - which kept most of its assets in cash during the financial crisis - went on to build a highly integrated, risk-weighted portfolio of investments.
Under the guidance of founding CIO David Neal, it also broke with SWF tradition by challenging its staff to look beyond their particular areas of expertise and think about risk and return across the total portfolio. The result: an innovative organization known for its flexible investment style and its ability to deploy assets throughout diverse sectors and geographies……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Norway oil wealth fund made big gains in 2012

Posted on 11 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s oil fund, one of the biggest investors in the world, rose in value by 13.4% last year, its second-best performance ever. The central bank said the fund’s investments in shares jumped by 18.1% in 2012, boosted by soaring equity indexes around the world.
It is now worth 3.8tn krone (£450bn; $670bn), up from 3.3tn krone in 2011. Norway’s fund invests the money from its huge oil industry in the nation’s future. The sovereign wealth fund is now 40% bigger than the value of the entire Norwegian economy. If it was invested inside the nation, this would cause distortions like massive inflation………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s Oil Fund Jettisons Gilts

Posted on 11 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s oil fund — the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund — almost halved its exposure to UK and French government bonds last year while increasing it to debt from the US, Japan and Germany. The $712 billion fund slashed its holdings of UK government debt from 110 billion kroner at the end of 2011 to 60 billion kroner at the end of December.
French bond holdings dropped from NKr80 billion to NKr44 billion over the same time period. The oil fund — known as Norges Bank Investment Management due to its position inside Norway’s central bank — enjoyed its second best year since its formation in 1998 as buoyant equity markets helped it to a return of 13.4 percent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s $710 bln wealth fund back on top form in 2012

Posted on 11 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, one of the world’s biggest investors, grew by around $100 billion in 2012, sealing one of its best years on record as it benefited from the striking upturn by stock markets. Known as the ‘oil fund’, it invests revenue from Norway’s lucrative oil industry for the country’s future. It is now worth around $710 billion, 40 percent more than the value of the entire Norwegian economy.
The fund has been steadily reducing its assets in Europe as part of a long-term plan to move into both emerging and developed markets in Asia and the Americas - where it sees the strength of the world’s economy in the years ahead………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway sovereign fund ups exposure to Indian stocks, debt

Posted on 11 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, the largest across the world, increased its exposure to Indian stocks by 38 per cent to $2.57 billion in 2012, while its holdings of Indian debt securities have also risen manifold. The Government Pension Fund Global of Norway, which manages assets worth over $700 billion and is ranked as the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, has close to 120 companies in its equity investment portfolio and these include giants like RIL, Infosys, SBI and TCS.
While the total number of Indian stocks in its portfolio has remained unchanged, the aggregate exposure to them rose to $2.57 billion at the end of 2012, from $1.8 billion a year ago, the Fund said in its annual portfolio report………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Malaysia: Norway fund pulls out of 23 palm oil companies

Posted on 11 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s pension fund, the largest sovereign wealth fund in the world, has pulled out of 23 palm oil companies in Indonesia and Malaysia after deeming them to be producing palm oil “unsustainably”.
The fund, worth US$710 billion (RM2.2 trillion), announced this in its annual report on Friday following its move last year to expand its investment guidelines to include deforestation as a threat to future growth. “In the first quarter of 2012, we sold our stakes in 23 companies that, by our reckoning, produced palm oil unsustainably………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s $710 bln fund continues to exit Europe

Posted on 11 March 2013 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s $710 billion sovereign wealth fund continued to shift away from Europe at the end of last year as the continent’s economies struggled, buying into key Asian and emerging markets instead, it said on Friday.
The fund, one of the world’s biggest investors, cut its European holdings to 48 percent by the end of the year from 53 percent a year earlier, shifting its portfolio to gain exposure to fast-developing markets where it sees the strength of the world’s economy in the years ahead………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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