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Tuesday, Nov 12, 2002

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ICICI Bank down on Dabhol worries

Aparna Krishnan

MUMBAI, Nov. 11

THE stock of ICICI Bank has taken a beating on the bourses recently due to investment concerns and not so encouraging quarterly performance.

The stock has seen a steady decline and shed over seven per cent in the last five days. Today, ICICI Bank finished flat at Rs 121.35 on the BSE with 3.79 lakh shares being traded. On the NSE, the stock closed at Rs 121 with 6.68 lakh shares being traded. Of the traded shares, 56.25 per cent was presented for delivery on the BSE and 62.25 per cent on the NSE.

According to analysts, the counter has been witnessing some decline in the participation of financial institutions, including mutual funds early this year. But the attractive low valuations of the stock are expected to bring back the investor community.

"As opposed to the other banks such as State Bank of India (SBI), the topline figures on a quarter-on-quarter basis did not seem up to market expectations," said an analyst from a domestic brokerage firm.

During the first quarter ended June 30, 2002, the bank's income from operations; interest earned was Rs 2395.55 crore. Total income was Rs 2833 crore. Net profit was Rs 252.9 crore.

"One of the reasons for the disinterest was the fact that the bank continued to repay high cost liabilities of ICICI. Also, the company's exposure to Dabhol Power Company (DPC) is to the tune of Rs 1,470 crore," said the analyst.

But there are other positives that are now bringing back the interest. "The bank is focussing on the retail loans segment as the key growth driver. The bank has done well on the home loans front where disbursements have grown considerably to about Rs 1,340 crore in the first quarter of FY2003," said another analyst tracking the banking sector.

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