Pudong Bank slashes share issue by 37.5pc

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 28 February, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 28 February, 2008, 12:00am

Shanghai Pudong Development Bank will scale down its planned share placement by 37.5 per cent amid heightened official opposition to mega-financing deals.

Pudong Bank said in a Shanghai exchange statement last night it would sell not more than 800 million shares, compared with the original plan of one billion shares. The bank did not indicate the fund-raising size, but Reuters said it would be cut to about 25 billion yuan (HK$29.5 billion) from 40 billion yuan.

It said the bank hoped to raise its capital adequacy ratio to 11 per cent from 9.15 per cent at the end of last year after the placement.

The China Securities Regulatory Commission said on Monday that companies should not 'maliciously seize money from the market', a pointed reference to companies planning to top up their capital.

Pudong Bank has won board approval to place as many as one billion shares.

Ping An Insurance (Group) also faces pressure to trim its 120 billion yuan share sale after the securities regulator's warning. Big share placements have been blamed for a slump in the mainland market this year.

At yesterday's A-share price, Pudong Bank is expected to raise about 300 billion yuan. The shares closed at 40.62 yuan, up 0.32 per cent.

'The shares have risen for the past two days following a slump,' said Wu Jie, an analyst at Dao Heng Securities. 'Investors seem to have digested the move by the lender to issue additional shares. The share offer cannot wait. Otherwise, the bank's capital strength will further weaken to a level that might need intervention from the banking regulator.'

The China Banking Regulatory Commission requires mainland lenders to have a minimum capital adequacy ratio of 8 per cent.

'Unlike Ping An, Pudong's share offer has been talked about since last year,' said Zhang Xi, a banking analyst at China Galaxy Securities. 'There is an urgent need to boost the lender's capital. The share offering could help shore up its capital to above 12 per cent.'

Pudong Bank said in a separate statement profit last year rose 63.85 per cent to 5.49 billion yuan, helped by a 19.55 per cent loan growth and a surge in non-interest revenue.

Net interest income rose 36 per cent to 24.18 billion yuan; fee and commission income nearly doubled to 1.13 billion yuan.

Its non-performing loan ratio fell to 1.46 per cent in December from 1.83 per cent, it said.