In a mess of its own

Given the uncertainty over capital infusion and hidden stress in its loan book, analysts don’t believe that PNB’s cup of woes has brimmeth over

The country’s second-largest public sector bank has now officially turned into a pariah on the Street. After having rung the alarm bells early this year following a massive Rs.14,357 crore fraud perpetrated by the now absconding jeweller Nirav Modi, a majority of analysts assigned a “sell” rating only after the bank declared its disastrous fourth-quarter (Q4) results on May 15. Among the analysts tracking the stock, which has more than halved from Rs.185 in January to Rs.74 level, 15 have a “hold” rating, while 11 have a “sell” rating, according to Bloomberg. Hemendra Hazari, an independent market analyst, is surprised that the market took so long to react on the stock. “The day the bank revealed the fraud, it was always going to be a write-off. It beats me what the analysts were expecting from the bank,” says Hazari, who does not see the bank’s woes ending anytime soon.