State-run insurance giant LIC purchased shares worth an estimated Rs 20,000 crore, mostly of public sector companies, during the last quarter of 2011-12, but also sold shares of many private sector giants.
While it purchased shares of state-run ONGC and many PSU banks, Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) is also estimated to have sold shares worth a total of about Rs 8,000 crore in various companies, which mostly included private sector blue-chips like Tata Motors, ICICI Bank, ITC, Reliance Industries, Bajaj Auto, Maruti Suzuki, L&T and HDFC.
The major public sector companies whose shares were sold by LIC during the quarter (January-March, 2012) included State Bank of India (SBI) and Power Grid. On the other hand, the only major additional private sector investment was made by LIC in Sun Pharma during this period.
As per the data compiled by investment banking and equity research firm Kotak Institutional Equities, LIC's major investments during the quarter included ONGC (Rs 10,800 crore), PNB (Rs 1,900 crore), Bank of Baroda (Rs 1,400 crore) and Bank of India (Rs 1,000 crore).
The other companies where LIC invested during this period included NMDC, LIC Housing Finance, PFC, Union Bank, Sun Pharma and Allahabad Bank.
On the other hand, LIC lowered its exposure to companies like SBI (with sale of shares worth an estimated Rs 1,400 crore), Tata Motors (Rs 1,200 crore), ICICI Bank (Rs 940 crore), ITC (Rs 750 crore), Bajaj Auto (Rs 600 crore), Reliance Industries (Rs 580 crore), Maruti Suzuki (Rs 550 crore), L&T (Rs 520 crore), PowerGrid (Rs 510 crore) and HDFC (Rs 450 crore).
LIC raised its stake in PNB by 6.2%, while the increase in its holding was 4-6 per cent in cases like ONGC, Bank of Baroda, Bank of India, LIC Housing Finance, Union Bank and Allahabad Bank.
The state-run insurer also pared its stake by 1-2% in companies like SBI, Tata Motors, Bajaj Auto, Maruti and PowerGrid.
As per the Kotak report, the 40 top stocks in LIC portfolio accounted for 79% of its total equity portfolio in the country. These stocks included ITC (7.8% of LIC's portfolio), ONGC (6.5%), RIL (6.4%), SBI (5.7%), L&T (5.3%), ICICI Bank (3.5%) and Infosys (3%).
The other major stocks in LIC portfolio include HDFC Bank, Tata Steel, TCS, M&M, Bharti Airtel, LIC Housing Finance, NTPC, Tata Motors, PNB, BHEL, HUL, GAIL, BoB, NMDC, Maruti, Tata Power and HDFC.