Big bull keeps faith in stocks

>> Friday, October 24, 2008

Jhunjhunwala increases stakes in some companies despite market slump

Small investors may have given up hope on stocks, but the big bull is unperturbed. Billionaire investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala and his wife Rekha have increased their stake in five companies at a time when 'buying stocks' has gone out of fashion.
The companies in which the Jhunjhunwalas have increased their stake in the quarter ended September 30, 2008, included Praj Industries, Lupin, Nagarjuna Construction, Autoline Industries and Geometric.
All of these stocks, except Lupin, delivered negative returns during the last quarter. Shares of Lupin gained about 8 per cent, while those of Praj Industries (down 19.89 per cent), Nagarjuna Construction (down 29.03 per cent), Autoline Industries (down 27.26 per cent) and Geometric (down 5.92 per cent) ended the quarter ended September 30 in red.
Jhunjhunwala, who is considered one of India's most successful stock market investors, is known to make investments in companies during early stage and hold them for a long duration.
For instance, shares of Karur Vysya Bank were bought by Jhunjhunwala way back in 1992. A chartered accountant by profession, the Forbes magazine had named him as the 51st richest Indian in 2007.
Jhunjhunwala and his wife retained stake in 15 of 24 companies, in which they have more than 1 per cent holding, in the last quarter. The list included companies like Crisil, Punj Lloyd, Bilcare, Pantaloon, Bhusan Steel, Viceroy Hotels, Prime Focus, Rishi Laser, Dwarikesh Sugar, MRO TEK, JB Chemicals, Alphageo, Mid-day Multimedia, Agrotech and Garware Wall Ropes.
There were four companies in which the Jhunjhunwalas have decreased their stake in the last quarter. In Titan Industries, their stake has come down from 8.98 per cent as of June 30 to 7.99 per cent as of September 30. The big bull also trimmed his stake marginally in Geojit Financial (from 8.60 per cent to 8.59 per cent), Karur Vysya Bank (from 4.62 per cent to 4.44 per cent) and Provogue (from 1.66 per cent to 1.63 per cent) in the last quarter.
When Financial Chronicle contacted the celebrated investor, he said, "I have no comment on my stock market investments."
Jhunjhunwala sees the 'mother of all bull markets' in India in another four to five years. He is also not worried about the massive withdrawal of money by the foreign institutional investors (FIIs) from the Indian stock market this year.
Stock holding above 1 per cent in a listed company is disclosed and Jhunjhunwala may be holding shares in several other companies, where his holding may be less than 1 per cent. There could also be more holdings through companies, trusts and proprietary accounts, which are not in the public domain. He also holds shares in several unlisted entities as a private equity investor.
Source: - MyDigitalFC