Sovereign Wealth Fund and Public Pension Assets Reach Record $33 Trillion for 2021

Posted on 01/01/2022

Sovereign wealth funds and public pension assets reached a record US$ 33 trillion at the end of 2021, according to data from SWFI. SWFI research discovered that massive quantitative easing policies and the lifting of 2020 lockdowns in Western economies provided a rush of wealth that was created and printed. As central banks increased liquidity, asset owners benefitted from the rise in the prices of equities, real assets, and infrastructure. Risky ventures, SPACs, and other assets were able to tap into prolonged liquidity. These QE policies led to double digit investment returns for many public funds who did not sell-off in 2020 or bought the dip at that time period.

Assets managed by sovereign wealth funds rose 10.04% over the year to $9.404 trillion, while those of public pension funds jumped 20.66% to $23.6 trillion.

Total Public Funds – Sovereign Wealth Fund + Public Pension Fund Assets

Year Total Public Fund Assets – USD
2021 33,004,975,850,784
2020 28,105,998,923,472
2019 28,127,474,159,796

Public Pension Fund Assets

Year Public Pension Assets – USD
2021 23,600,322,493,401
2020 19,559,417,144,415
2019 19,881,089,050,494

Sovereign Wealth Fund Assets

Year Sovereign Wealth Fund Assets – USD
2021 9,404,653,357,383
2020 8,546,581,779,057
2019 8,246,385,109,302

Notes: Some 2021 data is for smaller funds or delayed reporting funds could be from 2020. In addition for public pension funds, SWFI tracks a majority of funds over US$ 1 billion in AUM. This analysis leaves out other government funds, which totaled US$ 3.138 trillion at the end of 2021.

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