Norway's Government Pension Fund Global, the largest sovereign wealth fund globally, announced its highest annual return ever on Tuesday. Led by prominent U.S. technology companies and Danish pharmaceutical firm Novo Nordisk, the fund's impressive performance in 2023 was bolstered by market enthusiasm towards groundbreaking artificial intelligence advancements like ChatGPT.
Despite challenges posed by high inflation rates and political unrest worldwide, Oil Fund manager Nicolai Tangen revealed that the fund's value skyrocketed by 16% over the year, reaching a staggering 15,765 billion kroner (equivalent to approximately $1,500 billion). To put this into perspective, each of Norway's 5.5 million inhabitants would hypothetically receive around $273,000.
The primary drivers behind the fund's growth were six influential U.S. technology companies: Microsoft, Apple, NVIDIA, Meta, Amazon, and Alphabet. Electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla secured the seventh spot on the list.
Danish-based Novo Nordisk emerged as another major contributor to the fund's success. While originally developed as a diabetes treatment, their drug Ozempic experienced rapid expansion in 2023 as an increasing number of individuals turned to it for weight loss purposes.
Furthermore, Novo Nordisk manufactures a higher-dosage variant of Ozempic, branded as Wegovy and marketed specifically as a weight loss medication.
The Government Pension Fund Global, commonly referred to as the Oil Fund, channels Norway's profits from oil and gas investment. Remarkably, it owns approximately 1.5% of all publicly listed companies worldwide. Primarily composed of stocks, the fund also holds government bonds and possesses substantial stakes in real estate and renewable energy infrastructure.
This groundbreaking achievement highlights Norway's prowess in managing its abundant natural resources and solidifies its status as a global leader in the financial realm.