LIC invests Rs44,000 cr in equity markets in April-Nov

Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) on Tuesday said it has invested Rs44,000 crore in the equity markets between April-November this year, an increase of 52 per cent year-on-year.

The state-run life insurance major had invested around Rs29,000 crore in April-November of the previous fiscal.

For the whole of the previous fiscal, LIC had invested Rs47,000 crore into equities.

LIC said its equity investments in the first half of the current fiscal had more than doubled to Rs39,224 crore from Rs18,000 crore in the same period last fiscal.

"This year the government's disinvestment programme has picked up in the first half and, we, being the long term investor have invested there," chairman V K Sharma told reporters.

LIC, however, will not be an aggressive buyer in equities for the rest of the fiscal, Sharma said.

"We don't want to buy extra in equities...we are contrarians. Market is at its peak. We will keep on doing routine sales and purchases of equities but we will not be aggressive in buying equities," Sharma said.

He said LIC has seen some dip in its income from investments in debt instruments due to falling interest rate scenario.

The company wants to invest more in the government securities as it will be beneficial for policy holders and pensioners.

"We will like RBI to issue more long-dated securities. Our appetite for g-sec will be Rs10,000 to Rs20,000 crore for the coming four months of this fiscal," Sharma said.

For the six months ended September, LIC's first year premium grew 24 per cent to Rs68,224.29 crore.

Total premium income grew 12 per cent to Rs1,48,037 crore in the April-September period as against Rs1,32,257 crore collected during the corresponding period last year.

It's gross total income grew of 13 per cent to Rs2,50,267 crore in the first half against Rs2,22,350 crore in the year-ago period.

Total assets of LIC stood at Rs27,25,808 crore against Rs23,90,056 crore in the corresponding period last year, a growth of over 14.04 per cent. Total policy payouts amounted to Rs76,126 crore compared to Rs73,546 crore in the year ago period. This includes a payout of Rs35,482.07 crore covering 79,74,383 claimants for the half year ended September 2017 against Rs35,643.75 crore for 73,22,250 claimants in the corresponding period previous year.