FIIs up stake in ICICI, Axis, HDFC Bank; non-institutions sell

FIIs up stake in ICICI, Axis, HDFC Bank; non-institutions sell Mumbai: Overseas investors seem to be on a share purchase spree in the country's three leading private sector lenders -- ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and Axis Bank -- even as non-institutional investors are turning bearish.

The Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) upped their holding in all the three banks during the latest quarter ended March 31, 2013 -- a period during which the three companies were incidentally accused of inadequate money laundering controls in a sting operation.

As per the latest shareholding data of the three banks, FIIs jacked up their stake in Axis Bank from 34.83 percent to 40.94 percent during the January-March 2013 quarter.

During the same period, ICICI Bank saw the FII holding go up from 37.09 percent to 37.94 percent, while the same in HDFC Bank rose from 33.66 percent to 34.07 percent.

In contrast, the non-institutional investors (NIIs), which include small retail investors and HNIs, do not seem to share the same optimism and cut their holdings in ICICI Bank and Axis Bank.

NIIs trimmed their stake in ICICI Bank to 8.74 percent from 8.93 percent in January-March 2013 quarter, while their stake in Axis Bank fell to 8.48 percent from 9.73 percent in December quarter.

However, the NII holding went up marginally in HDFC Bank during the same quarter from 17.3 percent to 17.43 percent.

PTI