Allahabad Bank focuses on recovery, refers 65 NPA accounts to IBC

Jun 11, 2018 0

Kolkata– State-run Allahabad Bank, which referred 65 stressed accounts involving around Rs 12,566 crore to the NCLT for IBC resolution during last fiscal, is focusing on recovery and rebalancing its loan book with emphasis on small, micro, agriculture and retail advances.

The lender also said the number of “wilful defaulters” declared by the bank stood at 257, a two-and half-fold jump from March 2017 figure of 101.

Allahabad Bank. (Photo: Facebook/@AllahabadBankOfficial)

“Taking into account the optimistic outlook of the economy and its different sectors, the bank will align its business objective to maximise its gains.

“The bank shall primarily focus on aggressive recovery drive, further build-up in CASA (current account and savings account), rebalancing of loan book with focus on SMARt (small, micro, agriculture and retail) loans thereby increasing its share to the loan book supported by technology,” its latest annual report said.

The Kolkata-headquartered lender would also look at different avenues to raise capital with simultaneous reduction in risk weighted assets.

“Bank has referred 65 Non-Performing Assets borrowal cases involving an amount of Rs 12,566.11 crore to the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) for resolution under Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) during FY18.

“A separate — NCLT Cell — at Head Office for exclusive monitoring of NCLT referred cases is being formed,” it said in the report.

At the end of the 2017-18, gross NPA of the bank stood at Rs 26,562.76 crore as compared to Rs 20,687.83 crore in FY 17 (2016-17) and Net NPA remained at Rs 12,229.13 crore as on March 31 as against Rs 13,433.51 crore in FY17.

According to it, FY18 was a challenging year for the Indian banking industry due to continued stress faced in asset quality on account of various macroeconomic and other factors.

The lender has nine Asset Recovery Management Branches (ARMBs) which function exclusively for resolving NPAs and it organised 12 recovery camps in the previous year (one camp in each month) involving all the branches.

“This step was very successful in terms of recovery that amounted to Rs 3564.55 crore,” it said.

According to lender, it sold 216 stressed accounts and assets worth Rs 2,539.21 crore to asset reconstruction companies (ARCs) during the last financial year. (IANS)

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Pradhan rules out review of dynamic transport fuel pricing

Jun 4, 2018 0

Dahej (Gujarat)– Ruling out a review of the daily dynamic pricing regime for transport fuel introduced last June, Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday however said the government was concerned about rising fuel prices and is working on a long-term solution to the problem of price volatility.

In face of the recent surge in petrol and diesel prices, Pradhan also appealed to state governments to tax these within a “reasonable and responsible” band.

Indian Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan

“There is no review of daily price mechanism,” Pradha” told reporters here after receiving the first liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipment from Russia under a long-term contract at the import terminal here on Monday.

“We are thinking of a long-term solution. We are concerned about prices and about the plight of the common man. Government of India is taking a holistic view,” he said.

The Minister also said that state governments should cut sales tax, which because of their levy ad valorem leads to rise in revenues of the state governments when prices rise.

“We cannot push states but only appeal to them.

“I have already categorically stated several times that the present oil price hike is due to three main factors. Hike in the international price of crude, fluctuation in the dollar and Indian currency ratio, and some of the tax issues are also there,” he added.

State-run oil marketing firms marginally lowered petrol prices for the sixth consecutive day on Monday under the dynamic pricing regime although the rates continue to rule at unprecedented levels following the resumption of daily price changes after a 20-day suspension of the system last month owing to the Karnataka elections.

As per prices announced by largest retailer Indian Oil Corp, petrol per litre in Delhi on Monday cost Rs 77.96, down from Rs 78.11 on Sunday.

Similarly, in Mumbai and Kolkata, petrol prices were at Rs 85.77 and Rs 80.60 a litre respectively, while in Chennai petrol fell by 15 paise on Monday to Rs 80.94 per litre.

Diesel sold on Monday in Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai and Chennai for Rs 68.97, Rs 71.52, Rs 73.43 and Rs 72.82 per litre, respectively.

“Today will be seen as the golden day for India’s energy roadmap,” Pradhan said referring to first LNG ship from Russia, adding that the government is committed towards transforming India into a gas-based economy.

“To bring Russia’s LNG in India is a big achievement in our energy roadmap. In next 20 years, $25 billion worth gas will come to India and nearly $1.5 billion worth of LNG will be bought from Russia every year. It is a successful deal between India-Russia,” he said.

“Four years back, we were importing LNG from only Qatar. Today we are getting LNG from Australia, US and now Russia,” he added.

State-run gas utility GAIL has signed a 20-year contract with Russia’s energy giant Gazprom for purchase of 2.5 million tonnes of natural gas a year.(IANS)

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Fitch downgrades PNB’s viability ratings

Jun 4, 2018 0

Mumbai– Fitch Ratings has downgraded the viability rating (VR) of state-owned Punjab National Bank (PNB) to ‘b’ from ‘bb-‘ and maintained it on rating “watch negative” (RWN).

“The two-notch downgrade to PNB’s VR is a reflection of the significant deterioration in its standalone credit profile, mainly due to a drop in its core capital ratio that was bigger than Fitch’s expectation,” the agency said in a statement on Monday.

“The deterioration in its core capitalisation was caused by a sharp increase in its non-performing loans (NPLs), including the $2.2 billion in fraudulent transactions reported in February 2018, and the related increase in credit costs, which resulted in large losses in the financial year ended March 2018 (FY18).”

“The decline also highlights management’s weaker execution and previous underwriting and oversight gaps, which the bank has already started taking steps to address.”

According ot the agency, the RWN reflects its expectations that the “pressures, mainly relating to asset quality, earnings and profitability, will persist at least over the next few quarters”.

“This could weaken its already low core capitalisation further unless the bank is able to save or generate capital through intrinsic sources such as non-core asset sales and cost reductions although there is the prospect of the government injecting further capital into the state banks,” the statement said.

As per the statement, PNB’s ability to sustain, if not improve, its buffers through sources such as retained earnings, fresh equity raising and stake sales is important for its VR.

However, PNB’s “Long-Term Issuer Default Rating” (IDR) has been affirmed at ‘BBB-‘ and its “Support Rating Floor and Support Rating” at ‘BBB-‘and ‘2’, respectively.

“The Outlook on the IDR is Stable… PNB’s IDR is at its Support Rating Floor of ‘BBB-‘ and reflects our view of the state’s high propensity to provide extraordinary support to PNB,” the statement added. (IANS)

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US auto tariffs would breach WTO rules: EU

May 24, 2018 0

Brussels– The EU said any unilateral US auto tariffs based on national security would be against World Trade Organization rules after President Donald Trump launched a probe into American vehicle imports, raising the stakes for the bloc as it bids for waivers from White House levies on steel and aluminum.

Donald Trump

Trump has demanded a reduction in the EU’s 10 per cent tariff on American car exports and repeatedly threatened to impose levies on European auto imports if the bloc retaliates against US steel and aluminium tariffs, Efe news reported.

“It is very difficult to asses what does it mean or what is behind this,” European Commission Vice President Jyrki Katainen said in Brussels on Thursday.

The commission — the EU’s executive arm — has been negotiating with US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to secure an exemption from US tariffs of 25 per cent on steel and 10 per cent on aluminium since Trump’s decision in early March.

The bloc received temporary waivers, expiring June 1, but has struggled to convince the White House not to punish its longstanding European allies.

Brussels has engaged Washington and promised to enter into duty-slashing trade talks in exchange for unlimited waivers.

Meanwhile, the bloc also prepared a list of American products that could swiftly face 2.8 billion euros of levies unless Trump exempts the EU, and asked to join China’s WTO challenge against US tariffs, which were also based on national security and deemed illegal by Beijing and Brussels alike.

“Whether the new announcement further complicates the trade negotiations or not, we don’t know,” Katainen said, adding that the EU doesn’t expect additional hardships in the wake of Trump’s autos announcement.

“We have indicated very clearly to our US friends that we are always ready to discuss improving the trading environment, as we have been trying to do for many years.” (IANS)

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After 1,460 days of Modi rule, ‘achhe din’ yet to come, feel experts

May 24, 2018 0

By Aparajita Gupta

New Delhi– There’s only one year more to go for the BJP-led regime before another test at the hustings. But is the country any nearer to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s promised ‘acche din’ (good days)?

Four years ago, the country had voted the present regime to power on hopes of better days in all socio-economic-political spheres. But despite some strong structural reforms like GST, and gut-wrenching changes like demonetisation, the jury may still be out on how good it has been, according to economists and others experts.

Despite India’s GDP growth of 7.2 per cent in the third quarter (October-December) of 2017-18, some economists feel that the demonetisation drive, avowedly taken to “cleanse the system” of black money, had ended up damaging the country’s economy instead.

“Demonetisation was a terrible mistake by the government, for which the common people paid the price. It has reduced people’s trust in the banking system, as they were denied their own money during the period of cash crunch. It takes so much time and work to build institutions and policies — it is so much easier and faster to break things,” Jayati Ghosh, Economics Professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), told IANS.

The government decided to ban 1,000 rupee and 500-rupee notes on November 8, 2016, taking away 86 per cent of the total currency in circulation. “May be this move had served the government’s purpose politically, but economically it was a bad one,” Ghosh added.

Echoing similar views, Arun Kumar, former professor of economics at the JNU, told IANS that when the NDA government came in, the Indian economy was already on an upward trajectory. The quarter, in which the government took over, the growth climbed to eight per cent. In October 2016, India was the fastest growing economy in the world when China slowed down a bit.

“But then the government administered a shock to the system with demonetisation. It had a negative impact on the unorganised sector that comprise 45 per cent of production and 93 per cent of employment in the country. According to some estimation, 50-80 per cent of that got damaged,” he said.

Kumar, who is now Chair-Professor with the Institute of Social Sciences, added: “Government did no survey at that time and hence no data is available. Even data from International Monetary Fund and World Bank, which rely on government data, do not show any estimates (on impact).”

After demonetisation, credit off-take in the country declined sharply. “Between November-December 2016, it was at historic low of 60 years. Investment into the country also took a big hit,” he said.

However, Ranen Banerjee, Partner & Leader, Public Finance and Economics, at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has a different take on some of the benefits flowing from the action.

“Demonetisation had positive impact as far as digital payments were concerned. It shot up sharply during that period but came down subsequently. The level is still higher earlier. But demonetisation as a measure did not deliver all the results that it was supposed to deliver,” Banerjee said.

The government’s other major thrust, though, on Goods and Services Tax (GST) — rolled out on July 1 last year, got better billing. Economists are hopeful that it will bring in beneficial changes once the hiccups are over. Banerjee says GST would change the entire landscape of tax compliance in the country by creating a multiplier effect. “GST was a bold move which is showing positive results,” he added.

Ghosh, though, thinks GST goes against the grain of federalism. “A unified system is not so necessary in a federal structure — for example, the US does not have it and still has a very modern economy. In a federal structure you have to allow states to have some money raising power. Further, GST implementation has been really bad.”

Kumar said: “Introduction of GST has hit the unorganised sector badly. Even in Malaysia where GST was introduced in 2015-16 at 26 per cent, government decided to scrap it. The organised sector is rising at the expense of unorganised sector. Disparity is rising.”

Industry chambers have by and large welcomed government initiatives, especially the decision on GST. “The overall economy is strong with GST having settled down and reforms firmly on the right path,” Chandrajit Banerjee, Director-General of Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), told IANS.

Over the last four years, according to him, the government had systematically addressed major “pain points” for the economy such as ease of doing business, non-performing assets of banks, foreign direct investment rules, infrastructure construction and exit of failing enterprises.

“The government’s mission-mode development campaigns have delivered notable results, adding to overall growth multipliers. The firm level and sectoral level numbers look promising for the next year in terms of orders booked and capacity utilisation,” said CII’s Banerjee.

Former economics professor at Indian Statistical Institute, Dipankar Dasgupta, who holds that the economy was yet to recover from the hit it took because of demonetisation, says that on GST he was hopeful that with time it will stabilise. “In the other countries where it was introduced there were teething problems too,” he said.

The government also took up the job to cleanse bad loans of banks. It is pumping in Rs 2.11 lakh crore as capitalisation, spread over two years. But a number of banking scandals and rising non-performing assets (NPA) may have reduced the faith of people in the bank system, after the shock of demonetisation. “We have declining deposits in the banking system due to people’s rising mistrust,” says Ghosh. Dasgupta says recapitalisation should be followed with caution so that it does not widen the fiscal deficit.

The government, though, has got support in its effort to tackle the issue of NPAs. The bankruptcy law has put everyone on notice. “People are taking the issue of NPAs seriously trying to resolve it. Companies are opting for out of court settlement. Propensity to comply has increased as borrowers know that there will be consequences on not servicing a loan,” Banerjee of PriceWaterhouseCoopers said.

Yet, overall the promise of the golden pot at the end of the five-year rainbow, as promised by Modi in his of speeches — where he had painted the BJP rule in attractive hues — has not materialised in four years. BJP’s best salesman may have oversold the hope.

“I do not blame this government for not being able to deliver ‘achhe din’. Which government since Independence has?” asks Dasgupta rhetorically.(IANS)

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Need long-term view to resolve fuel price rise issue: Prasad

May 23, 2018 0

New Delhi– Transport fuel prices going north is a matter of both increasing concern and discussion and the government trying to find a long-term solution to the problems issuing from global price volatility, IT and Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said on Wednesday.

IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad with John Kern, SVP, Supply Chain Operations, Cisco, in Delhi. (Photo: Coutresy, Cisco India)

Briefing reporters here following a Cabinet meeting, Prasad was responding to queries on petrol prices in Mumbai, Delhi and Chennai having already reached unprecedented levels, and setting new benchmarks every other day.

Under the dynamic pricing regime, petrol in Mumbai touched Rs 84.99 a litre on Wednesday. In Chennai, price of the fuel breached the Rs 80 a litre mark on Wednesday and was priced at Rs 80.11 per litre.

In Delhi, petrol inched higher to a new record of Rs 77.17, and in Kolkata, it cost Rs 79.83, almost a five-year high.

“The issue of the frequent hike in fuel prices has become a matter of discussion and concern and the government is involved in the whole process of concern and uncertainty,” Prasad said.

Diesel prices, which have already reached unprecedented levels, set new records across the country. In Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai and Chennai, diesel was sold at Rs 68.34, Rs 70.89, Rs 72.76 and Rs 72.14 per litre, respectively.

Responding to a query on the comments of former Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on Wednesday that the government can reduce excise on petrol by Rs 25 per litre but is unwilling to do so, Prasad said the Centre is considering a long-term view on the matter in “view of the frequent fluctuation in fuel prices”.

He pointed out that petrol has been deregulated since a few years and that at times of fall in global prices in the past, the government passed on the benefit to consumers.

“In view of the global uncertainty on oil prices, the government is looking at the desirability of taking a long-term view to deal with the issue of volatility and the frequent ambiguity arising out of the fluctuation in prices,” he said.

“There is a compelling need for a long-term structured solution to the problem in which the government is actively engaged.”

The Minister also said the taxes on petrol and diesel go to fund development work that benefits both the Centre and the states, citing the example expenditure on works such as highways, digital infrastructure, education and creating medical institutes. (IANS)

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Facebook enlists Qualcomm for its gigabit Wi-Fi project

May 21, 2018 0

San Francisco, May 21 (IANS) Facebook on Monday was reported to have enlisted US-based chipmaker Qualcomm to provide the technology for its gigabit Wi-Fi project that the social media giant announced during its annual developer conference in 2016.

Mark Zuckerberg

“This is a solution for both rural and urban areas that simply have spotty Wi-Fi in certain regions,” The Verge quoted a Qualcomm spokesperson as saying.

With Qualcomm chipsets being integrated to the “Terragraph” technology, manufacturers would be able to upgrade routers and increase broadband data-sending frequency up to 60GHz.

The “gigabit Wi-Fi project” was launched as part of Facebook’s multi-node wireless Terragraph system that was meant to focus on improving high speed connectivity to dense urban areas.

This project uses technology that transmits higher frequencies to send data through the air — at rates as high as 7 GB/s.

Facebook has not given any official information, but field tests are expected to begin in the middle of next year.

Facebook had said in a blogpost in 2016 that Terragraph’s reduced interference and ability to operate in non-line-of-sight conditions increases customer reach.

“For customers or business in multi-dwelling units or high-rises, the ‘Terragraph system’ can be externally attached to a building and connected to an in-building ethernet data network,” the company had said.

Combined with Wi-Fi access points, Facebook claimed that Terragraph is one of the lowest-cost solutions to achieve 100 per cent street-level coverage of “gigabit Wi-Fi”. (IANS)

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Fuel prices sky rocket: Chambers tell government to cut excise duties

May 21, 2018 0

New Delhi– With transport fuel prices in Delhi and Mumbai touching an all-time high, industry chambers, Ficci and Assocham, on Monday called for the government to urgently reduce fuel excise duties. It also urged the government to bring automobile fuels under the purview of Goods and Services Tax (GST).

The price of petrol per litre in Delhi on Monday under the dynamic pricing regime touched a record high of Rs 76.57, already having beaten on Sunday the previous high of Rs 76.06 in the city on September 14, 2013. In Mumbai petrol price was at Rs 84.40 per litre on Monday.

Indian Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan

On Monday, in the other major cities like Kolkata and Chennai, the price of the fuel rose to near five-year high levels, at Rs 79.24 and Rs 79.47 per litre.

Diesel in the national capital on Monday went to its highest level of Rs 67.57 per litre.

“At a time when the Indian economy is on a recovery path, rising oil prices are again posing a high risk to India’s economic growth trajectory,” a Ficci statement said here.

“Over the last few years, falling oil prices contributed significantly towards improving the health of the economy. With global oil prices once again spiralling upwards, the macroeconomic risks of higher inflation, higher trade deficit and pressure on balance of payments with attended consequences for the Rupee value have once again surfaced,” said Ficci President Rashesh Shah.

“There is also a risk that monetary policy may turn hawkish, which would, in turn, have a bearing on the growth of private investments,” he said.

Reacting to the spiralling fuel price Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Sunday said the government is “sensitive towards the rising fuel prices” and various alternatives are being explored. “I hope something will work out soon,” he added.

“While cut in excise duty on petrol and diesel may provide temporary relief to the consumers, the sustainable solution lies in the automobile fuel coming under the Goods and Services Tax, which can happen only after the Centre and states together reduce their dependence on the fuel considerably,” said D S Rawat, Secretary General of Assocham.

He said, rising crude prices coupled with weaker rupee with cascading impact on inflation pose “a big challenge for the Indian macro picture and ironically, there is a little that can be done in the short term.”

In the long run, India needs to rework its energy security and ensure that petrol and diesel do not remain a huge revenue resource. Rather than being a revenue source for the government, the auto fuel should drive the economic growth, Rawat added.

Even though oil is now considered less of an independent driver of business cycles than before, the State Bank of India (SBI) on Monday said the recent surge in crude oil prices is likely to impact the country’s imports and stretch the ongoing fiscal’s current account deficit (CAD) to 2.5 per cent of GDP.

In an SBI Ecowrap report, titled “Oil on boil: It’s time we understand oilnomics better”, Chief Economist Soumya Kanti Ghosh argues that its estimate that a $10 per barrel increase in oil price will increase India’s import bill by around $8 billion is a “model estimate and actuals could be much different from them”.

At its first bi-monthly monetary policy review of the fiscal in April, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) retained its key interest rate at 6 per cent for the fourth time in succession, citing rising oil prices as a major upside risk to retail inflation that rules over the RBI’s median target of 4 per cent.

“Unless swift action is taken to address the situation, the economic growth will again head towards a speed-breaker. Amongst the most immediate actions that can be taken by the government is to bring down the excise duty on fuel,” Shah added.

He pointed out that the government’s latest Economic Survey 2017-18 has estimated that for every $10 per barrel rise in crude prices, while GDP growth will reduce by 0.2-0.3 percentage points, the current account deficit will increase by 0.4 percentage points and wholesale inflation will go up by 1.7 percentage points.

Ficci also noted that when the global oil prices were down, the government had hiked excise duty on fuel nine times between November 2014 and January 2016, but had reduced it only once in October 2017.

“Given that overall excise duties have been raised by as much as Rs 11.77 per litre for petrol and Rs 13.47 per litre for diesel, while reduction has been mere Rs 2 per litre, there is a scope of bringing down the excise duties. While such a move will have an implication on the fiscal revenues at this juncture there is a need to do the fine balancing act,” Shah said.

“As per some estimates, every Re 1 per litre cut in excise duties results in potential revenue losses of Rs 130 billion (0.1 per cent of GDP). On the positive side, GST collections are edging up and if the government focuses on increasing disinvestment proceeds, revenue losses from excise can be mitigated,” he said.

“Going forward, the government should also work with the states to bring petrol products under the GST regime,” he added.

Over the long term, there is a need for a strategic policy towards reducing India’s reliance on oil, entering into strategic partnerships with global oil suppliers “and evaluate forming a global consumer alliance along with other leading consumers of oil like China”, Ficci said.

The price of the Indian basket of crude oils, composed of 70 per cent sour grade Oman and Dubai crudes and the rest by sweet grade Brent, has gone upwards of $72 a barrel in May, after rising to an average of $69.30 in April 2018.

It averaged $47.56 and $56.43 per barrel respectively during the last two financial years. (IANS)

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Pradhan expresses concern over high oil prices with Saudi Minister

May 18, 2018 0

New Delhi– Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan raised concern over the ongoing surge in crude oil prices and the resultant hike in transport fuel prices in the country during a telephonic interaction with Saudi Arabias Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources Khalid Al-Falih.

Indian Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan

“Minister Pradhan expressed his concern about rising (oil) prices and its negative impact on consumers and the Indian economy,” an official statement said here on Friday.

The concern comes as the petrol price in the national capital hit Rs 75.61 per litre on Friday, inching closer to the previous high of Rs 76.06, reached in September 2013.

Pradhan emphasised his desire for stable and moderate prices.

According to the statement, Minister Al-Falih also assured Pradhan that supporting global economic growth is one of the Saudi Arabia’s key goals.

He reiterated his commitment towards stable supplies and that “the Kingdom together with other producers will ensure availability of adequate supplies to offset any potential shortfalls and ensure that prices remain reasonable.”

The spike in transport fuel prices in India can be largely attributed to the consistent rise in global crude oil prices recently. Brent crude oil is currently priced above $79 per barrel.

Petrol prices in the major cities of Kolkata, Mumbai and Chennai also were at multi-year highs on Friday — Rs 78.29, Rs 83.45 and Rs 78.46 per litre, respectively.

Similarly, prices of diesel, continued its gaining momentum and reached new record levels across the country, with the price in Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai and Chennai being — Rs 67.08, Rs 69.63, Rs 71.42 and Rs 70.80 per litre. (IANS)

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PNB shares plunge 14% after Q4 loss, Jefferies suggests bailout

May 16, 2018 0

Mumbai– Shares of multi-crore fraud hit Punjab National Bank (PNB) slumped around 14 per cent (intra-day) on Wednesday, a day after the bank reported a loss of over Rs 13,000 crore for the fourth quarter of 2017-18.

Looking at the bank’s Q4 earnings, financial services company Jeferries said in a report that “the need for a bailout by the government is immediate.”

The public sector major on Tuesday had reported a net loss, after closing hours of the stock markets, of Rs 13,417 crore for quarter ended March, against a net profit of Rs 262 crore for the corresponding quarter in 2016-17.

The gross non-performing assets (NPA) of the company stood at 18.38 per cent for the fourth quarter of 2017-18 compared to 12.53 per cent during the corresponding quarter in 2016-17.

On Wednesday, the share price of the bank on the BSE settled at Rs 75.55 — down Rs 10.45 or 12.15 per cent — from the previous close of Rs 86 per share.

PNB shares may take support around Rs 69 per share in the near term, said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research, HDFC Securities.

“We will keep seeing intermittent bounces in the PSU banking stocks based on emerging newsflow,” Jasani told IANS.

He was of the opinion that “till there are no major corporate governance change in the whole PSU banking space, a sustained rise in these (PSB) stocks seems unlikely.”

He said that if few large IBC (Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code) resolutions happen, then probably PSU banks may witness an upward correction.

“PNB may also be restricted to conduct normal business. Two of its Executive Directors have also been divested of their functional powers. PNB will likely face significant operational challenges in the near term,” Jefferies said in its report.

The CBI on Monday filed a chargesheet against Allahabad Bank MD and CEO Usha Ananthasubramanian and 21 others, including 11 bank officials, in the over Rs 13,000 crore Punjab National Bank fraud case in which diamantaire Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi were allegedly involved. Ananthasubramanian was earlier with PNB.

The agency also named PNB Executive Directors K.V. Brahmaji Rao and Sanjiv Sharan, and General Managers Nehal Ahad (who dealt in international operations) and Rajesh Jindal in its chargesheet filed in a special CBI court here.

CBI officials said the chargesheet names Nirav Modi and his brother Nishal in connection with the issuance of Letters of Undertaking totalling Rs 6,498.20 crore during 2011-17. (IANS)

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