STANDARD Chartered Bank has denied rumours that it has been selling a huge part of its mortgage portfolio due to financial difficulties arising from the Indian share scam. The rumours suggest that the bank has sold 20 per cent of its mortgage portfolio under cost-cutting directives from its London headquarter after losses incurred in the Indian stock scam. Standard Chartered Bank and some other banks have been charged by the Indian central bank for breaking several Indian banking regulations and engaging in illicit transactions in 1992. An inquiry conducted by the central bank, the Reserve Bank of India, revealed that the scandal caused losses totalling more than 40 billion rupees (about HK$10 billion). However, Standard Chartered Bank's Asia region acting chief executive Mark Waller said the bank had sold only around five per cent of its portfolio, which was just a small portion of its mortgage loans at the end of June. ''We made some profits from it, and we'll continue to do some more within the next 12 months,'' said Mr Waller. He said that securitising mortgages was their aim, which would bring profits to the bank. Mortgage securitisation was a common practice among banks, especially in the US. And these days mortgages could be traded in the secondary market, according to people in the industry. By selling some mortgages, more capital will be available so that banks are able to do further mortgage business under the capital adequacy requirements. Mr Waller described the move as successful and said that it would be continued. He said the bank's streamlining strategy would make it cost-efficient. It moved some of its operations from Central to Taikoo Shing last year. ''We pay only $20 per square feet [psf] in Taikoo Shing while we paid $50 psf in Central,'' he said. The bank recently moved some operations to Tsim Sha Tsui, which was also in line with its streamlining strategy, according to Mr Waller. ''About 400 of the workforce from some corporate and trade finance operations have moved to Park Lane Square,'' he said. The bank signed a lease for 78,000 square feet in Park Lane Square in May for several years. Standard Chartered Bank had made a provision of GBP272 million for the 1992 year end to cover losses arising from the Indian stock scam.