Norway's wealth fund earned $46 billion in first quarter as stocks rose

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OSLO (Reuters) – Norway’s $1.3 trillion sovereign wealth fund, the world’s largest, posted a first-quarter profit thanks to strong stock markets, it said on Wednesday.

© Reuters/Gwladys Fouche FILE PHOTO: A general view of the Norwegian central bank, where Norway’s sovereign wealth fund is situated, in Oslo

The fund had a 4.0% return on investment, earning 382 billion crowns ($45.7 billion) between January and March, beating its own benchmark index.

“The rise of the equity market was to a great extent driven by the finance and energy sectors,” the fund’s deputy CEO Trond Grande said in a statement.

While stocks earned a return of 6.6%, the fixed income portfolio had a loss of 3.2% while unlisted real estate had a positive return of 1.4%.

The fund invests the Norwegian state’s revenues from oil and gas production into 9,100 companies worldwide, owning 1.4% of all listed shares globally, and also invests in bonds, property and green infrastructure.

($1 = 8.3575 Norwegian crowns)

(Reporting by Gwladys Fouche, editing by Terje Solsvik)

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