ICICI, Larsen, Reliance, State Bank, Wipro: India Stocks Preview

The following companies may have unusual price changes in India trading. Stock symbols are in parentheses and share prices are as of the last close, unless stated otherwise.

The Bombay Stock Exchange’s Sensitive Index, or Sensex, declined 38.96, or 0.2 percent, to 19,545.35. The S&P CNX Nifty Index on the National Stock Exchange fell 0.1 percent to 5,868.40. The BSE 200 Index dropped 0.1 percent to 2,412.03. SGX S&P CNX Nifty Index futures for April delivery added 0.4 percent to 5,900 as of 11:20 a.m. in Singapore.

Banks: The Reserve Bank of India fined 19 banks including HDFC Bank Ltd. (HDFCB) , Axis Bank Ltd. (AXSB) , Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd. (KMB) and ICICI Bank Ltd. (ICICIBC) for violating rules on derivatives, the central bank said in a statement on its website yesterday.

Shares of HDFC Bank fell 1.3 percent to 2,359.85 rupees, Axis Bank declined 1.5 percent to 1,356.35 rupees, Kotak Mahindra dropped 1.2 percent to 464.05 rupees, and ICICI Bank rose 0.8 percent to 1,121.45 rupees.

Energy companies: Oil & Natural Gas Corp. (ONGC IN), India’s largest state-owned oil explorer, and Hindustan Petroleum Corp. (HPCL IN ) had their ratings raised to “buy” at Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which added the two companies to its Asia Pacific “conviction buy” list.

Oil & Natural added 0.2 percent to 303.85 rupees. Hindustan Petroleum dropped 0.7 percent to 371 rupees.

Ambuja Cements Ltd. (ACEM) : The company, a unit of Holcim Ltd., reported a profit of 4.07 billion rupees ($91 million) in the first quarter ended March 31, compared with 4.62 billion rupees a year earlier, it said in a statement to the Bombay Stock Exchange yesterday. The shares rose 1.4 percent to 157.8 rupees.

Bhushan Steel Ltd. (BHUS) : The steelmaker plans to invest 50 billion rupees in setting up a factory in the state of Orissa, it said in an announcement to the Bombay Stock Exchange. The shares fell 0.7 percent to 514.05 rupees.

GMR Infrastructure Ltd. (GMRI) : India’s Supreme Court allowed Delhi International Airport Ltd. to charge a development fee, the GMR Group, one of the four partners in DIAL, said in an e-mailed statement. The court also admitted an appeal challenging a lower court order that upheld levying the fee, the statement said. GMR Infrastructure, a builder of airports, roads and power plants, is a unit of GMR Group. The shares sank 3.4 percent to 38.4 rupees.

JK Paper Ltd. (CPM) : The nation’s largest producer of branded papers plans to raise 2.5 billion rupees from a rights issue in May, the Press Trust of India reported yesterday. The shares rose 0.6 percent to 52.85 rupees.

Larsen & Toubro Ltd. (LT) : The nation’s biggest engineering company with Alstom SA won a 73 million-euro contract for the design, supply, installation, testing and commissioning of track-works for the Chennai Metro, Alstom said on its website yesterday. The shares fell 0.6 percent to 1,713.35 rupees.

Maruti Suzuki India Ltd. (MSIL) : The nation’s biggest carmaker was downgraded to “hold” from “buy” by Ashwin Patil, an analyst at LKP Shares & Securities Ltd.

The company will reduce its dependence on Japan for auto parts by sourcing components from Thailand and Germany among other countries, the Business Standard reported, citing Sudam Maitra, managing executive officer of supply chain. The move could reduce the cost of production by 5 to 10 percent, the report said. The shares fell 1.8 percent to 1,302.6 rupees.

Petronet LNG Ltd. (PLNG) : The nation’s biggest importer of liquefied natural gas, posted a profit of 2.06 billion rupees in the fourth quarter compared with 972.9 million rupees a year earlier, Managing Director A.K. Balyan said in New Delhi yesterday. The shares declined 1 percent to 136.9 rupees.

Reliance Industries Ltd. (RIL) : India’s most valuable company was cut to “neutral” from “buy” at Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which said the prospects for any “medium-term earnings surprise” may be limited following the company’s fourth-quarter results. The brokerage lowered its share-price estimate to 1,125 rupees from 1,250 rupees and removed the company from its Asia “conviction buy” list, analysts led by Nilesh Banerjee wrote in a report. The shares slid 0.8 percent to 1,001.15 rupees.

State Bank of India (SBIN) : The nation’s largest lender plans to complete a proposed merger with the subsidiary banks in one year, Chairman Pratip Chaudhuri said in New Delhi yesterday. The shares rose 0.5 percent to 2,933.75 rupees.

Steel Authority of India Ltd. (SAIL) and Bharat Petroleum Corp. (BPCL IN): Nuclear Power Corp. of India Ltd. is in talks with the companies for a venture to set up atomic plants. Shares of Steel Authority fell 1.6 percent to 166.95 rupees, while Bharat Petroleum rose 1.9 percent to 630 rupees.

Tata Steel Ltd. (TATA) : The nation’s largest producer of the alloy invested 53 million pounds on a cooling system at a steelmaking plant in Port Talbot to reduce its external power requirements by about 15 percent, according to an e-mailed statement yesterday. The shares rose 0.1 percent to 627.4 rupees.

Wipro Ltd. (WPRO) : The third-biggest software exporter reported group net income rose 14 percent to 13.8 billion rupees in the three months ended March 31, from 12.1 billion rupees a year earlier, Bangalore-based Wipro said in a statement today to the Bombay Stock Exchange. That compared with the 13.64 billion- rupee average of analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Wipro fell 0.3 percent to 464.7 rupees.

-- Editor: Darren Boey

To contact the reporter on this story: Abhishek Shanker in Mumbai at ashanker1@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Darren Boey at dboey@bloomberg.net

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