ANCHORAGE -

The Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. says return rates for the fund’s latest fiscal year are up more than 40 percent from the one before it, promising a significant jump in Alaskans’ Permanent Fund Dividend checks.

A Friday statement from the corporation says the fund’s rate of return was 15.5 percent in fiscal year 2014, a jump from its 10.9 percent showing in fiscal year 2013. In another benchmark, the Permanent Fund broke the $50 billion threshold with a total value of $51.2 billion -- a rise largely credited to its $21 billion stock portfolio.

“The U.S. portfolio had positive performance in all four quarters, and returned 27.0 percent for the fiscal year,” APFC officials wrote. “Although there were some challenges, overall overseas stocks ended the year with gains, leading the Fund’s non-U.S. portfolio to return 20.2 percent, while the global portfolio was up 25.0 percent.”

While APFC CEO Michael Burns says Friday’s figures have yet to be audited, he points to the fund’s overall value -- assessed after the withdrawal of money for PFD checks in October -- as an indicator of the Permanent Fund’s health.

“I think it’s a big number for us,” Burns said. “The transfer to the (state) Department of Revenue for the dividend was $1.2 billion, versus $600 million last year.”

Burns says the fund’s managers are beginning to deepen investments in high-profile real estate developments, such as the Tyson’s Corner shopping complex outside of Washington, D.C. The project, part of a $5.9 billion portfolio with a 12.7 return rate for the fiscal year, is undergoing a roughly $500 million overhaul, including the addition of an apartment complex and a hotel.

“We’re migrating toward more private, illiquid assets,” Burns said. “We had more this year than we had last year, and we had more last year than we had two years ago.”

The fund’s shift in priorities is partially a product of what Burns says is its uncommon perspective among investors.

“One of the assets the Permanent Fund has is that we’re really a long-term multi-generational fund, and we can take on these long-term investments,” Burns said.

Burns says that several factors influence the final amount of PFD checks, such as the gross number of applicants statewide and the number rejected for various reasons by the Department of Revenue. In general, however, he says the doubling of the transfer should produce a dividend roughly double that of last year’s $900.

“It should be somewhere around that,” Burns said.