Board Discussed Financial Plan For FY19, Not Videocon Loan Issue: ICICI Bank

Posted May 09, 2018

While the bulk of the country's 9.5 trillion rupees of bad loans, as of the end of 2017, were with the country's dominant state-run banks, private sector lenders ICICI Bank and smaller rival Axis Bank also accounted for large chunks. The loans later became bad loans as Videocon group could not return the loan amount.

He clarified that none of "the investors of NuPower Renewables are borrowers of ICICI Bank" and that Kochhar did not chair the committee that had lent to Videocon.

Amid controversy of alleged conflict of interest involving ICICI Bank and its CEO, former Sebi chief M Damodaran has said one option is for her to step down for a period of three or four months till the investigation is completed.

In addition, Sharma said at the press briefing that Kochhar has been making all her disclosures in accordance with the regulatory guidelines under the Companies Act and the Banking Act.

But the board's clean chit may not be enough.

Even as Kochhar made clear that the issue was not raised at the board meeting to approve financial results, the government nominee on the board, Lok Ranjan, a joint secretary in the Department of Financial Services, was "not able to attend the board meeting". This seems completely out of whack with what the government did as soon as the controversy erupted when Ranjan was appointed in place of Amit Agarwal.

ICICI Bank didn't comment on the investigations in the earnings statement.

In a post-earnings conference call, Kochhar said that, "Today, there was no discussion at all on this issue..."

The veteran banker has spent nearly nine years in the top post at ICICI Bank.

Rouhani says plans in place for any Trump decision on nuclear deal
Such a statement would amount to a USA threat to violate the deal in the future if Iran came too close to a bomb capability. Trump has not told Israel whether he will change or scrap the deal, a senior Israeli intelligence official said on Sunday.

Asset quality worsened for the bank with the gross NPA ratio rising marginally to 8.84 percent but net NPA moved down marginally to 4.77 percent from from 4.89 percent in the year-ago period.

Domestic loans were up 15 percent year-on-year at the end of March, and Kochhar said the aim would be to increase the overall domestic loan book by 15 percent a year, with retail loans growing at above 20 percent until March 2020.

She announced a fourth quarter net profit of Rs 1,020 crore - 50 per cent lower than last year and the lowest in two years - but in line with market expectations.

ICICI Bank CEO Chanda Kochhar guided that the net ratio will narrow to about a quarter of the current level over the next two years.

On a standalone basis, the bank, now grappling with allegations of conflicts of interest involving chief executive Chanda Kochhar, saw its net profit halving to Rs 1,020 crore.

Analysts said the balance sheet clean-up exercise will help ICICI reduced its stressed pool assets and is a positive.

The bank managed to report a profit despite an additional Rs 15,737 crore loans slipping into the non-performing category.

ICICI Bank shares have fallen 8.1 percent so far this year compared to a 3.3 percent rise in India's benchmark S&P BSE Sensex Index.

The percentage of gross NPAs rose to 8.84 per cent from 7.89 per cent previous year and 7.82 per cent on a sequential basis.