Korea Gas Corp. (036460), the world’s biggest liquefied natural gas importer, tumbled the most in more than three years in Seoul trading after a report that the company scrapped its plan to sell asset-backed securities.
Korea Gas retreated 9.3 percent to 70,300 won as of 9:57 a.m. on the Korea Exchange, heading toward its steepest loss since Sept. 30, 2009. The stock was the worst performer on the MSCI Asia Pacific Index.
Korea Gas decided not to sell 5.4 trillion won ($5.1 billion) of asset-backed securities after getting guidelines from the Korea Accounting Standards Board, the Korea Economic Daily reported today, citing an unidentified company official. The utility had earlier tried to sell ABS with receivables as collateral to lower debt levels.
“The news is hurting sentiment but I think today’s decline is excessive,” Shin Ji Yoon, an analyst at KTB Investment & Securities Co., said by telephone today. “If this sale is canceled, there are other alternatives to help improve its finances such as a tariff increase.”
Korea Gas hasn’t determined its position on the sale “for the moment,” Song Jae Ho, a spokesman at the utility, said by telephone today. Daishin Securities Co. reduced its share-price estimate on Korea Gas to 90,000 won from 93,000 won, citing lower chances of an ABS sale.