India’s largest insurer, Life Insurance Corporation (LIC), held stocks worth a “carrying value” of Rs 9,79,843 crore (close to $130 billion), or 24.77 per cent of its total investments, as on September 30, 2021, making it the wealthiest investor in the stock markets.
LIC’s investments in listed equity represented approximately 4 per cent of the total market capitalisation of the NSE, says the IPO prospectus filed by the Corporation with Sebi. LIC holds sizeable stakes in most of the large- and mid-cap stocks listed on the stock exchanges. Carrying value, or book value, is the original cost as reflected in the balance sheet minus the depreciation. The Corporation, which is going for an IPO, says profit on sale/ redemption of investments rose by 47.27 per cent from Rs 31,361.67 million in fiscal 2020 to Rs 46,186.75 crore in fiscal 2021 which was on account of realised profits on sale of equity. Over 90 per cent of the corporation’s policyholders’ equity investments on a standalone basis are held in stocks that are a part of the Nifty 200 and BSE 200 indices as on September 30, 2021, LIC said.