Last updated : 6/21/22 3:43 PM     

EPF RECORDS RM15.85 BILLION GROSS INVESTMENT INCOME FOR Q1 2022

KUALA LUMPUR, 21 June 2022: The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) recorded total investment income of RM15.85 billion for the first quarter ended 31 March 2022 (Q1 2022), lower than the RM19.29 billion recorded in the corresponding quarter in 2021, driven by a significant decline in worldwide markets.

 

Chief Executive Officer Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah Azizan said, “We had a strong start in the earliest part of the first quarter, but the situation took a turn as global markets suffered a decline, causing lower returns in bonds and equities throughout the remaining quarter.

 

“The decline was attributed to a number of developments stemming from geopolitical tensions, impact from soaring inflation rates, and interest rate hikes. The Russia-Ukraine war only exacerbated the situation, causing further uncertainty and volatility at a time when countries are still struggling to recover from high debt burdens and stretched public finances from the pandemic.”

 

Although earnings generation from equities, which continued to be EPF’s main income contributor, was impacted by the market slowdown, Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah said the EPF managed to leverage on its portfolio position to capitalise on additional gains.

 

During the quarter under review, Equities contributed RM10.46 billion in income, accounting for 66% of total gross investment income. After taking into account the cost write down on listed equities, net investment income for the asset class generated RM9.37 billion for the period.

 

A total of RM1.09 billion was written down for listed equities during the quarter, thus netting the total net investment income in Q1 2022 to RM14.76 billion. Writing down is an internal policy adopted by the EPF on its Listed Equity investment as a prudent measure to ensure the portfolios remain healthy.

 

Fixed Income instruments, comprising Malaysian Government Securities and Equivalent, as well as Loans and Bonds, contributed a steady income of RM4.75 billion, or 30% to the gross investment income. The income recorded was higher compared to RM3.89 billion generated in Q1 2021, largely due to higher market yield in Q1 2022, compared to the same period last year.

 

Real Estate and Infrastructure registered a decrease in income to RM0.36 billion, from RM0.71 billion in the corresponding period in 2021. Income from Money Market instruments stood at RM0.28 billion, from RM0.38 billion in Q1 2021.

 

As at March 2022, the EPF’s overall investment asset grew to RM1.02 trillion, of which 37% was invested in overseas investments. The EPF’s diversification into different asset classes, markets and currencies continue to provide income stability and add value to EPF’s overall return. In Q1 2022, the EPF’s overseas investments generated RM8.23 billion in income, representing 52% of the total gross investment income recorded. 

 

A total of RM1.88 billion out of the RM15.85 billion gross investment income was generated for Simpanan Shariah, and RM13.97 billion for Simpanan Konvensional. Simpanan Shariah derives its income solely from its portion of the Syariah portfolio while income for Simpanan Konvensional is generated by a share of both the Syariah and Conventional portfolios.

 

Focusing on maintaining growth and rebuilding members’ savings
The next quarter onwards will see the EPF taking a cautious stance to navigate the downside risks associated with post-pandemic recovery and the war in Ukraine. The inflationary concerns, supply chain disruptions and tightening of monetary policy by major central banks are likely to continue to dampen both the equity and bond markets.

 

Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah, however, said the EPF remained optimistic of Malaysia’s growth prospects, especially following the reopening of economic and social sectors, which is expected to pick up as the year progresses on the back of heightened domestic and external demand, in line with the Government’s growth projection of between 5.3% and 6.3% for 2022. As for the weak equity market performance, he said the EPF would continue to rebalance the fund’s positions in stocks that are fundamentally strong but undervalued.

 

“We are confident of the measures taken by the Malaysian Government, such as ensuring trade openness and diversifying the export base, to keep the National Recovery Plan on track. The country’s solid international reserves and resilient financial sector are among strong fundamentals that would support recovery efforts,” said Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah, adding that the integrative recovery measures currently undertaken by the Government and relevant agencies, will help buttress the country’s economy against external disruptions.

 

As one of the pillars of the country’s socio-economic and social security framework, the EPF’s fund performance and support of the domestic capital market are integral to the country’s economic success. Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah said that the four pandemic-related withdrawal facilities – i-Lestari, i-Sinar, i-Citra, and Special Withdrawal – had helped tide members over during the pandemic, but now that the country has entered endemic phase, the focus would be on helping members rebuild their savings.

 

“In addition to prioritising members’ interests and future wellbeing, the EPF also needs to ensure it is able to perform going forward. Any further withdrawals would financially impact the EPF and weaken the fund’s current portfolio position and capacity to ensure sustainable returns. We will strive to ensure the health of our finances and globally diversified portfolio, guided by our Strategic Asset Allocation (SAA), so that we are able to ride out volatilities in pursuit of our long term portfolio objectives,” added Datuk Seri Amir Hamzah.

 

The EPF’s Q1 2022 results
Portfolio Asset % of Total Investment Asset Gross Investment Income (RM billion) % of Income
Equities 44% 10.46 66%
Fixed Income Instruments* 45% 4.75 30%
Money Market Instruments 5% 0.28 2%
Real Estate & Infrastructure 6% 0.36 2%
Total 100% 15.85 100%

 

 

* Contributions from Malaysian Government Securities & Equivalent, Loans and Bonds

 

 

Issued by the EPF Media Desk 
Corporate Affairs Department
21 June 2022

 

 

About the Employees Provident Fund (EPF)

The Employees Provident Fund (“EPF”) is one of the oldest retirement funds in the world. Established in 1951, the EPF is a social-security organisation focused on safeguarding member savings and delivering excellent services. In recent years, in line with its vision of helping members achieve a better future, the EPF has expanded its role to encompass the creation of a comprehensive social well-being ecosystem. Today, the EPF remains steadfast in its commitment to members through consistent efforts to update and improve itself, in order to build the foundation for sustainable, holistic and equitable well-being for all Malaysians.