Return on the Government Petroleum Fund in the first quarter of 1999
In the first quarter of 1999, the Government Petroleum Fund recorded a return of 2.9 per cent measured in international currency. The return on the equity portfolio was 6.6 per cent, while the bond portfolio showed a return of 0.4 per cent.
The high return on the equity portfolio reflects the general advances on major stock markets, particularly in Japan. As to the bond portfolio, there were wide differences across major markets, with the highest return in Japan and the lowest in the US.
The return in the first quarter was virtually the same as the return on the benchmark portfolio defined by the Ministry of Finance. The return on the Government Petroleum Fund's portfolio was 0.02 percentage point lower than the return on the benchmark portfolio.
Measured in NOK, the return on the Government Petroleum Fund was 0.14 per cent. The Norwegian krone appreciated in the first quarter in relation to the currency basket of the benchmark portfolio. However, movements in the krone exchange rate do not affect the Government Petroleum Fund's international purchasing power. The most straightforward approach is thus to evaluate the return in terms of international currencies.
No transfers of capital to the Petroleum Fund's international equity and bond portfolios were made in the first quarter of 1999. The market value of the Fund's securities portfolio came to NOK 172.1 billion at 31 March.
For further information: Norges Bank Investment Management
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