National Pension Service headquarters in Jeonju, North Jeolla Province (Yonhap)
By Anna J. Park
SK hynix and Samsung Biologics are two local stocks that the National Pension Service (NPS) net purchased the most last year. The NPS is the country’s largest institutional investor with around 884 trillion won ($767 billion) in assets under management (AUM) as of the end of April this year.
According to documents released by opposition lawmaker Suh Jung-sook who received related information from the NPS upon request, the public pension fund net purchased 434.2 billion won worth of SK hynix stocks last year, the largest amount spent on net purchasing in local stocks.
Samsung Biologics ranked second among stocks the NPS net purchased the most last year at 388.7 billion won, followed by Kia, Samsung C&T and HYBE Entertainment.
The NPS is known to have generated around 280 billion won in profits by holding and selling some shares of HYBE Entertainment ― the managing company of K-pop group BTS and many more global and K-pop artists ― during the past several months, since the company made its KOSPI debut last October.
LG Chem made the top of the list of most net sold stock by the NPS. The state pension fund net sold over 366 billion won worth of LG Chem stocks last year. Preferred stocks of Samsung Electronics followed the list as the second most net sold stock by the NPS. The pension operator net sold the two firms’ stocks that it held as the two firms’ corporate values on the stock market rapidly increased last year.
Hyundai Motor, and two IT giants, Naver and Kakao, were also among the top five most net sold stocks by the NPS last year.
The lawmaker’s office said the NPS seems to seek both profitability and diversification of its investment portfolio, as it net sold some profitable stocks, while including newly-rising sectors like the entertainment industry into its asset operating portfolio.