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Japan pension 'whale' GPIF cuts stock holdings during rally

$1.6tn fund faces government pressure to hit investment targets

Japan's Government Pension Investment Fund has long been compared to a whale for its huge but elusive presence in the market.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Japan's Government Pension Investment Fund, one of the world's largest institutional investors, has shifted to become a net seller of Japanese stocks as rising prices threaten to push it over a 25% portfolio weight target, estimates show.

The fund, which manages about 170 trillion yen ($1.62 trillion) in assets, sold around 500 billion yen of domestic stocks on a net basis in the July-September period, Masahiro Nishikawa of Nomura Securities said. GPIF appears to be a net seller in the current quarter as well, after acting as a net buyer during the first half of 2020.

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