SINGAPORE, Sept 19 (Reuters) - Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC said on Monday the losses on its investment in UBS were offset by good investment decisions, which has helped its portfolio rebound to a level seen prior to the global financial crisis.
“In retrospect, we had said in late 2008 the timing for the (UBS) investment could have been better,” the Government of Singapore Investment Corp said in a letter to a local newspaper seen by Reuters.
“On the other hand, GIC also made good investment decisions during the same period. These have offset the losses on UBS,” it said.
GIC, which is UBS’s biggest shareholder with a 6.4 percent stake, did not comment on the latest news that the Swiss bank had lost $2.3 billion on rogue equity trades.
It also did not disclose its paper losses on UBS or reveal the size of its overall portfolio.
Analysts estimate GIC’s portfolio at about $300 billion.
GIC’s response came after Singapore-based Today newspaper published a letter in which the writer urged the fund to disclose the value of its holdings, including UBS.
The stake was worth around 2.5 billion Swiss francs ($2.86 billion), which means the sovereign wealth fund has lost about 77 percent of its 11 billion Swiss franc investment in UBS made at the end of 2007, excluding dividends, according to Reuters calculation based on UBS filings.
The net loss would be about 60 percent if coupon payments from UBS worth about 2 billion Swiss francs were included before the Singapore fund converted its notes to shares.
UBS Chief Executive Oswald Gruebel told Swiss television the alleged fraud by a rogue trader would have consequences for strategy and possibly for himself.
$1 = 0.875 Swiss Francs Reporting by Saeed Azhar