LIC to invest Rs61k cr in equity market this fiscal

LIC to invest Rs61k cr in equity market this fiscal

New Delhi: Unfazed by controversy surrounding its housing finance arm, country’s largest insurer Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) plans to pump in about Rs61,000 crore in the equity market during this fiscal.

“This year we are likely to invest around Rs61,000 crore (in equity market)," LIC managing director Thomas Mathew told the news agency.

Increase in exposure to equity market secondary or primary market would depend on market condition, he said.

“We hold shares for long term. Whether it’s down or up it’s opportunity for us," he said.

“Now it’s (market) up so we have booked profit. Already this year we have made good profits. Last year, total profit by churning portfolio was Rs9,400 crore full year," he said.

However, during this year till mid-October LIC has earned Rs12,000 crore by churning portfolio, he added.

During the first seven months (April-October period) of the current fiscal, LIC has breached the Rs50,000-crore mark.

LIC’s new premium stood at Rs50,605 crore compared to Rs30,469 crore during the same period last year, registering an increase of 66%.

Overall, the life insurance industry mopped up new premium of Rs69,706 crore during April-October this year, up from Rs46,689 crore in the corresponding period last fiscal.

The 22 private life insurers have collected Rs19,099 crore in the first seven months of 2010-11, up from Rs16,217 crore in the same period last fiscal.

Last week, LIC played down Rs14,000 crore deficit in three of its schemes, saying that the gap is notional and it had a surplus of Rs24,000 crore in the previous fiscal.

“Last year, our surplus was Rs24,000 crore. It (Rs14,000 crore) is a notional and actuarial deficit in particular schemes. Overall, we are very strong," LIC chairman T. S. Vijayan had said.

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (Irda) had earlier launched a probe to ascertain whether LIC had violated rules by transferring profits of one scheme to another to cover up the losses in some of its funds.

State-owned Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) manages assets worth over Rs12 lakh crore.