Yapi Kredi Bank Tumbles as UniCredit Said to Weigh Stake Sale

Yapi ve Kredi Bankasi AS fell most in more than 11 months after a report UniCredit SpA may sell its stake in Turkey’s fourth-largest listed lender.

Yapi Kredi Bank declined 5.6 percent to 3.72 liras at close in Istanbul, the biggest decline since June 8. The stock also pared its gains for 2016 to 13.1 percent. UniCredit SA, which is considering selling its holdings in online broker FinecoBank SpA, may also dispose of shares in Yapi Kredi Bank in Turkey and Bank Pekao SA in Poland to raise capital, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday. A spokesman for UniCredit in Milan declined to comment.

Yapi Kredi has been the best-performing stock on the Borsa Istanbul Banks Index this year as it reported the highest quarterly profit in more than two years. The Italian bank holds a 40.9 percent stake in Yapi Kredi, with Koc Holding owning a similar sized amount as part of a strategic partnership formed in 2002.

“The uncertainty around the process is raising questions over the bank’s future plans including a change in the strategies that may arise from a possible change in management,” said Cagdas Dogan, a banking analyst at BGC Partners in Istanbul. “While the reports don’t have an immediate impact on Yapi Kredi’s operations, investors also seem to be using this opportunity to cash in their year-to-date gains.”

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