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State pension fund earns big from equity investments in 2020

National Pension Service (NPS) (Yonhap)
National Pension Service (NPS) (Yonhap)
South Korea's national pension fund earned nearly 58 trillion won ($52.6 billion) from stock investments in 2020 thanks to the bullish stock market, data showed Wednesday.

As of Friday, the National Pension Service (NPS) held 181.3 trillion won worth of shares in 275 companies, of which it owns 5 percent or more, according to the data from corporate tracker CEO Score

The amount was up about 47 percent, or 57.7 trillion won, from the start of last year.

The bulk of last year's gains came from a spike in the share price of Samsung Electronics, the world's largest smartphone maker and flagship of South Korea's leading family-controlled conglomerate Samsung Group.

The NPS, the nation's largest institutional investor, chalked up a valuation gain of 20.1 trillion won from its 10.7 percent stake in the tech behemoth.

The share price of Samsung Electronics, also the world's leading memory chip maker, has soared 55.6 percent over the cited period.

The value of NPS stakes in global battery makers LG Chem and Samsung SDI also jumped by 4.9 trillion won (210 percent) and 3.7 trillion won (211 percent), respectively.

In addition, the state pension fund posted a valuation gain of 3.2 trillion won from its investment in global chip giant SK hynix Inc.

Meanwhile, the pension operator registered valuation losses from its investments in energy, insurance, shipbuilding and machinery companies.

The NPS is one of the world's leading pension funds, with assets under its management reaching more than 770 trillion won.

South Korea's stock market has been bullish in recent months on the back of expectations for an economic recovery. (Yonhap)
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