General weak mood adds to selling pressure

Investors seemed to be in a punishing mood on Tuesday, hammering stocks of companies that had belied street expectations.

Bank of Baroda and Jubilant Foodworks, which faced the investors’ ire on Monday, were joined by UCO Bank today that came out with Q3 numbers showing a sharp decline in net profit and a spike in NPA level.

UCO Bank reported higher total income of Rs 4,360.88 crore in Q3 of current fiscal compared to Rs 3,973.62 crore in the same period in the previous fiscal. The operating profit also was higher at Rs 830.74 crore (Rs 760.98 crore). But the bank saw its provisioning (other than tax) and contingencies shooting up to Rs 727.64 crore compared to Rs 420.45 crore in the same quarter in the previous fiscal.

The net profit at Rs 102.47 crore in Q3 this year was just a third of Rs 332.55 crore the bank had registered in the third quarter of last year. The net NPA ballooned to 3.32 per cent (2.04 per cent) and the EPS declined to Rs 1.54 (Rs 5.30).

There was a huge selling pressure in the counter with the trading volume at the close touching 98 lakh on the NSE. The stock closed at Rs 67.90, down Rs 3.50 or 4.9 per cent. The decline in share price has come at a time when the bank has called for an EGM on March 4 to seek shareholders' approval for making a preferential allotment to the Centre at Rs 77.28 a share to raise Rs 681 crore.

Sustained selling

Jubilant Foodworks Ltd reeled under sustained selling after the company came out with sales figures.Though on several parameters Jubilant’s result during Q3 was better, what unnerved the investors was the rather tepid same stores sales (SSS) growth and PAT. The SSS growth was nearly halved to 16.1 per cent (30.1 per cent). This was not just a Q3 phenomenon. In the first nine months of current fiscal, the same stores sales growth was only 19.2 per cent (30.9 per cent). The Q3 net profit had grown to Rs 37.7 crore (Rs 29.5 crore). All this led to the stock being battered for the second day today. The counter, which had lost about Rs 63 (or 5.3 per cent) on Monday, shed another Rs 95 (8.4 per cent) today at Rs 1,041 on the NSE. Bank of Baroda after losing Rs 64 (7.3 per cent) on Monday following the disappointing Q3 results tumbled by another Rs 19 (2.4 per cent) to close at Rs 785.

yegya.narayanan@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on February 5, 2013)
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