Total assets held by the nation’s households hit a record high 1.509 quadrillion yen in 2005, reflecting increases in income and rising share prices amid the economic upswing, the Bank of Japan said Friday.

According to the BOJ’s quarterly Flow of Funds Accounts report, the assets grew 74.8 trillion yen as of Dec. 31 from a year earlier to the highest level on record, which the central bank has been keeping since 1979.

Household assets held in cash and deposits totaled 783.1 trillion yen, compared with 787.8 trillion yen a year earlier.

Cash and deposits in total household assets slipped 3 percentage points to a record low 51.9 percent.

In contrast, the amount of funds held by households in investment trusts, bonds and stocks expanded, with their ratios in total household assets steadily growing.

The percentage of stocks in household assets rose 3.1 points to 11.4 percent as end of December, which is the largest since it logged 12.1 percent in 1991.

The move suggests many individuals have begun to take on more risk in managing their financial assets by shifting their funds from deposits to market-oriented financial products.

According to the report, individual assets held in the form of government bonds and state-guaranteed fiscal investment and loan program bonds soared 31.8 percent to a record 26 trillion yen.

Assets held in investment trusts jumped 40.1 percent to a record-high 51.1 trillion yen.

Assets held in stocks surged 48.1 percent to 118 trillion yen.

Meanwhile, financial assets held by private-sector nonfinancial companies totaled 788.4 trillion yen, compared with 715.4 trillion yen a year earlier.

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