At a time when the Bank Nifty is hovering near record highs, top executives of private lenders have decided to profit from this rally and trim their personal holding in their respective banks, according to corporate filings with the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).
As BSE Bankex emerged as the second best performing sectoral index, having rallied as much as 65% compared to 35% gains clocked by the benchmark Sensex, an increasing number of top executives have encashed some of their equity holdings. Collectively, twelve executives of four private lenders together have sold shares worth over R100 crore in the last one month.
ICICI Bank witnessed the highest sale by executives with over 4 lakh shares sold since the beginning of November. Even IndusInd Bank witnessed sale of 3.5 lakh shares in the period. Largest private lender by market value HDFC Bank, housing loan major HDFC and third largest private lender Axis banks each saw sale of over 2 lakh shares during the same period. All of these private sector lenders have rallied anywhere between 60% to 85% this year.
Besides a general shift towards the banking space on hopes of an economic revival, the latest RBI monetary policy in which the central bank indicated a turnaround in the interest rate early 2015 have also added to the momentum in the banking stocks.
While shares of ICICI Bank, Axis Bank and IndusInd bank all touched their life-time highs on Thursday, HDFC Bank, and HDFC had already touched that milestone on November 28,2014.
KV Kamath, the non- executive chairman of ICICI Bank sold shares worth R32.75 crore in two tranches of 1 lakh shares each in the first week of November.
Shikha Sharma, MD & CEO of India’s third largest private lender Axis Bank sold shares on November 10 and 14 worth R3.26 crore.
Between November 12 and December 1, Romesh Sobti, the managing director of IndusInd Bank along with other two colleagues Ramesh Ganesan and Sanjeev Anand together sold shares valued about R10 crore.
Filings with the bourses, part of the disclosures under Sebi (Prohibition of Insider Trading) Regulations show that selling of shares accelerated in the last 30 to 45 days.