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Norway fund hits $1 trillion mark

Yngve Slyngstad called the growth ‘stunning.’

If the Government Pension Fund Global, Oslo, were a country, it would rank somewhere behind Indonesia and ahead of Mexico in terms of gross domestic product.

Norway's sovereign wealth fund now boasts a larger value than most economies after surpassing the $1 trillion mark for the first time in its history. Led by the strengthening of the most significant global currencies against the U.S. dollar and strong equity markets, it reached $1 trillion on Sept. 19.

GPFG joined the $1.3 trillion Government Pension Investment Fund, Tokyo, as the only institutional investors with assets valued at $1 trillion or more.

"I don't think anyone expected the fund to ever reach $1 trillion when the first transfer of oil revenue was made in May 1996," said Yngve Slyngstad, CEO at Norges Bank Investment Management, in a news release. "Reaching $1 trillion is a milestone, and the growth in the fund's market value has been stunning."

Norges Bank IM, which manages the fund's assets, changed the asset allocation, reducing fixed income to 32.4% from 34.3% and increasing equity to 65% from 62.5% since Dec. 31, 2016. Equity investments returned 8.7% for 2016.

At the end of 2016, assets stood at 7.51 trillion Norwegian kroner ($870 billion). The fund's value increased 3.5% year-to-date Sept. 19 in local currency terms.