Mumbai: ICICI Bank shares fell 4% on Wednesday on concerns the bank’s Russian assets may be vulnerable as firms there struggle to stay afloat.
ICICI shares were down Rs12.1 at Rs284.30 on the 30-share BSE index that was trading 0.1% down in the afternoon. The stock dropped to just above last October’s low of Rs282.15, a break of which would take it to its lowest in nearly 4-years.
“The market is very concerned over the Russian exposure. Investors are expecting sharp write-downs as firms there are failing,” said Amitabh Chakraborty, president for equities at Religare Securities.
The stock is down more than a third this year. It tumbled 21.2% in February and has seen more losses in March. Its market capitalization has fallen to below that of smaller private-sector rival HDFC Bank.
“There are no losses in Russia,” an ICICI spokesman said, but declined to put a value to the Russian assets.
Brokerage CLSA said in a recent note the Russian exposure under ICICI Bank Eurasia was $584 million, consisting largely of loans to customers and placements with banks.
The subsidiary was formed in 2005 after the bank bought Russia’s Investitsionno-Kreditny Bank.
The Russian operations do not have a meaningful deposit franchise and group companies fund 84% of the liabilities, CLSA said.
Last year, the management of NYSE-listed ICICI had to repeatedly assure investors and depositors after its exposure to collapsed Lehman Brothers triggered a slump in its share price.