EPF records RM19.29b in gross investment income for 1Q21

by NUR HAZIQAH A MALEK / pic by TMR FILE

THE Employees Provident Fund (EPF) recorded a gross investment income of RM19.29 billion for the first quarter ended March 31, 2021 (1Q21) despite the continuous uncertainties from the pandemic.

Equities registered RM14.28 billion in income during the quarter, accounting for 74% of total gross investment income, while Fixed Income instruments continued to contribute a stable income of RM3.92 billion, the fund noted in a statement today.

Income from Real Estate and Infrastructure, as well as Money Market instruments came in at RM0.71 billion and RM0.38 billion respectively.

After the cost write-down on listed equities, the fund recorded a net investment income of RM19.24 billion.

EPF CEO Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah Azizan said the fund’s solid performance for the first quarter was a spillover from the global economic recovery that began in the second half of the year.

“We believe that the vaccination rollouts as well as supportive fiscal and monetary policies worldwide will play a key role in facilitating economic activities and growth.”

“The inflationary concerns did not derail the positive trend in the equity markets, and we took advantage of the opportunity to reposition our holdings in stocks that are fundamentally strong but undervalued,” said Amir Hamzah.

EPF’s investment assets stood at RM981.71 billion as at end March 2021, of which 36% was invested overseas.

The diversification in different asset classes, markets, and currencies continues to provide income stability and added value to the fund’s overall returns.

During the first quarter, the EPF’s overseas investments generated an income of RM11.15 billion, or 58% of the total gross investment income recorded, mainly driven by foreign equities.

By asset class, Fixed Income instruments made up 46% of investments while Equities comprised 44%. Money Market instruments and Real Estate and Infrastructure made up 4% and 6% respectively of investments.