LIC to increase equity investment this fiscal: Chairman S K Roy

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If the market is high, we will see how much we can sell for profit-booking. (Thinkstock) If the market is high, we will see how much we can sell for profit-booking. (Thinkstock)
Summary'We have done around Rs 32,000 crore in new equity purchases as of now...'

LIC is likely to cross its initial investment target of Rs 40,000 crore in equities this fiscal following the positive market sentiment, Chairman of the largest domestic institutional investor S K Roy said today.

"We have done around Rs 32,000 crore in new equity purchases as of now... When Rs 40,000 crore of investment was fixed, it was based on certain things. But now things have changed. In the second half, if opportunities come, then Rs 40,000 crore will be not a limitation," he said.

"This year, obviously, opportunities are more than what was anticipated. So, in all likelihood, this figure is likely to cross...," Roy told reporters on the sidelines of an insurance summit organised by industry body Ficci here.

LIC had cashed out from Infosys by selling shares worth Rs 3,400 crore in Q2, bringing down its stake to 4.95 per cent from 6.72 per cent in Q1. As on September 30, it fell to 4.95 per cent as per the latest data available with the stock exchanges.

Infosys scrip has moved in a wide range from about Rs 2,300 level to around Rs 3,300 in the past 10 months.

Roy also said the life insurer will be able to achieve profit from investments at its targeted level this fiscal but declined to give any number.

"If the market is high, we will see how much we can sell for profit-booking. If the market dips, that gives us a buying opportunity. In that sense, we have got both opportunities in abundant measures this fiscal," Roy said, adding that sectors like banking, pharma, some portion of infrastructure and auto look attractive for investment.

The insurance behemoth also maintained its bullishness on public sector banks saying it will invest if good opportunity comes up in this space.

"Public sector banks are very attractive investment opportunity for us and subject to regulatory issues, we look at state-run banking stocks with lot of interest. If an opportunity comes...like tier-I capital building opportunity, we will be definitely very happy to invest," Roy said.

The Chairman also said the insurer is witnessing good opportunity in the debt space.

"There is an improvement in this segment also. We are getting good proposals which are under consideration. I am sure this segment will look up by the end of the year," Roy said.

On the growth in premium witnessed by the company, Roy said

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