State-run insurer Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) has reduced its stake in Infosys to 3.25 per cent in the last quarter, with the share sale estimated at over Rs. 850 crore.
LIC, the biggest institutional investor in the stock market, held 3.71 per cent stake in Infosys during the October-December quarter, which has fallen to 3.25 per cent as of March 31, 2014
The state-run firm has been reducing its stake in Infosys since June quarter. It held 6.72 per cent stake in the country’s second largest software services exporter at the end of June 30, 2012, as per the latest data available with the stock exchanges.
Taking into account the current market value of Infosys shares, the 0.4 per cent decline in LIC’s holding in the company would be worth about Rs. 852 crore. Infosys shares closed at Rs. 3,235.80 level on Friday.
Infosys, which is scheduled to report its fourth quarter earnings tomorrow, is expecting a sluggish growth in revenue during the quarter.
Company’s CEO and MD SD Shibulal, last month, said he expects sluggish growth in January-March quarter due to muted spending by clients, especially in retail sector.
He had also said that muted growth in the fourth quarter of 2013-14 may spill over to the next financial year as well.
Infosys co-founder N R Narayana Murthy was brought back to head the IT major in June last year, following quarters of laggard performance.
Meanwhile, the company scrips have underperformed the broader market by declining nearly 6 percent compared to 5.7 per cent surge in the BSE’s benchmark Sensex during the March quarter.
LIC appears to have sold shares at a time when Foreign Institutional investors (FII) shored up their stake. FIIs hiked their stake in Infosys to 42.10 per cent in the January-March quarter from 40.65 per cent in the preceding three months.
However, domestic institutional investors reduced their exposure in Infosys to 13.66 per cent in January-March period of 2014 from 15.35 per cent in the preceding quarter.