Buoyed by the surging stock markets, the Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) may propose to invest up to 15 per cent of its investable amount in equity markets during the next financial year, Union Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya said. "We are proposing to invest up to 15 per cent during the next year. Central Board of Trustees (CBT) meeting will be held on March 30. We will seek its opinion.
So far, during the past one-and-half year we have invested Rs 18,069 crore. We are getting good yield. It is encouraging," Dattatreya said. According to the minister, so far in the current year, the Provident Fund body invested the amount in the two index-linked ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds) the BSE's Sensex and the NSE's Nifty which yielded a return of 18.13 per cent. He said the investment proposal will be put in the CBT meeting to be held on March 30 for the final call.
Dattatreya said the EPFO through fund managers had invested 14,700 crore in ETFs in the current financial year. A senior official said the Ministry of Finance gave its consent to the EPFO to invest from 5 per cent to 15 per cent of the investable income of the organisation every year. Investable income is the net income of the EPFO from the investments it had already made in various forms, fresh contributions among others. This year the investable income would be about Rs 1.40 lakh crore, the official said. The EPFO had started investing in ETFs in August 2015. EPFO manages a corpus of over Rs 8 lakh crore.