State-run Punjab National Bank may look at selling stake in PNB Housing Finance and PNB Gilts in the next financial year, to shore up its capital base.
“We look forward to stake sale, may be during the next financial year. We have stake in some of the entities like UTI, PNB Housing Finance and PNB Gilts and if there are opportunities, we will certainly explore it,” managing director and chief executive Usha Ananthasubramanian said.
She said the bank may not sell stake in its life insurance arm PNB MetLife at this point. Last October, the bank had listed PNB Housing Finance.
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In the quarter ended December, the bank posted a four-fold jump in net profit at Rs 207 crore on account of increase in treasury income and decline in cost of deposits.
Its asset quality, however, deteriorated further as gross non-performing assets hit 13.70 per cent of the gross advances during third quarter of current fiscal as against 8.47 per cent a year ago.
Likewise, net NPAs rose to 9.09 per cent of net advances as of December quarter from 5.86 per cent in the year-ago period.
With subdued demand, she expects credit growth to be at 6-7 per cent in the financial year 2016-17.
“Initially when we started the year, we were looking at a growth of 10-11 per cent, thinking that the economy will pull up. But moving through the nine months, we have been not been able to see those kinds of projects which we all were thinking would come up. Our growth would be at 6.7- per cent in the current financial year,” she said.
Ananthasubramanian further said the bank is also exploring to move the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) to file winding up petitions against large defaulters.
“This is also one of the tools we are exploring to bring the delinquents to the table. The cases where we do not have assets, where the primary assets are missing and where delinquencies have happened, we are trying to go through the route of NCLT and we want to be the early birds,” she said.