Japan's $1.1 trillion public pension fund has approved a plan to double its holdings of shares and cut back sharply on bonds in its portfolio to help improve its investment returns.

The Government Pension Investment Fund endorsed the change in investment strategy on Friday. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and other officials say it is needed to ensure the fund can meet its obligations to retirees.

The plan agreed to Friday calls for holdings of bonds to fall from about 60 percent to 35 percent. Holdings of shares will rise to about 50 percent, with half in domestic shares and half in foreign shares.

Japan's share market got a boost Friday from the pension fund plan and from a central bank decision to expand monetary easing to boost growth.