Mumbai: Shares of Bharti Airtel Ltd rose 5% intraday on Wednesday after it posted better-than-expected March quarter results. The telecom major’s fourth quarter net profit fell 78% to Rs83 crore while most analysts had estimated it to report losses in the three months ending March.
At 10:32am, Bharti Airtel was at 425.05, up Rs18.95 or 4.67% on the BSE. According to a Mint report, the company’s low quarterly net profit is due to the regulator slashing international call termination charge and a brutal tariff war triggered by the entry of Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd which bite into it margins.
In a note on 25 April, Nomura said that the overall Q4FY18 operating performance was more resilient relative to their expectations, even though the India business turned unprofitable. The brokerage firm has a buy rating on the company.
Though Bharti Airtel has lost 21% in the year so far and one of the worst performing stock in the Sensex, analysts are still bullish on the stock. Out of 33 analysts who track the stock on Bloomberg, 23 have ‘buy’ rating, four have ‘sell’ rating while six have ‘hold’. In contrast, rival Idea Cellular Ltd which lost 32% in the year so far and have more sell ratings. Out of 26 analysts, 13 have ‘sell’ ratings while six and seven have ‘buy’ and ‘hold’ ratings respectively. Benchmark index Sensex has gained 1.5% in the same period.
Meanwhile, BSE Telecom index has also gained over 2% on Wednesday as Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal’s (TDSAT) interim order is seen as a relief for top players Airtel and Idea Cellular. The telecom tribunal said in the order that until further orders, no penalty can be imposed on operators for not complying with the tariff reporting requirement to the telecom regulator.
After gaining nearly 50% in 2017, BSE Telecom index is the worst performer in this year. In 2018 so far, BSE Telecom index has slipped 20%.livemint