Fund managers divided on high beta preference

Last Updated: Sun, Sep 30, 2012 11:36 hrs

Riding high on the crest of the reforms wave, the markets touched their highest closing levels since July 2011 during the week under review (September 21-27). However, profit taking was seen at higher levels following the expiry of September derivative contracts. Also, globally, sentiment weakened as Germany's business confidence data witnessed a drop, while Spain faced bitter protests against budget austerity measures. Five of the six fund managers remained active.


Sr VP (Equity Research),Anand Rathi Financial Services

Prabhakar sold Grasim Industries, Tube Investments of India, Titan Industries, Cummins India and Rallis India with four-nine per cent gains. There were no buys.

He believes holding 30-40 per cent cash would be better as profit booking may occur before the result season, providing better entry points. Also, considering the political situation is still fluid he feels being in the defensive and taking money out of high beta stocks would be the best. His top holding currently includes Tata Coffee, Sun Pharmaceutical Industries, Emami, Coromandel International and Pfizer. His net worth is at Rs 10.45 lakh, up 4.46 per cent.

CMD, CNI Research

Ostwal chose Clariant Chemicals and Bombay Burmah Trading Corporation to be included in his portfolio. On the sell side he took off Bombay Dyeing & Manufacturing Company with 11 per cent gain.

Ostwals says, "Keep booking profits as large caps' valuations are close to their peak. One should start investing in undervalued mid-cap stocks now. As regards high beta, it is dangerous to enter at this point. If market corrects till 5,500, it would be a good strategy to get in again."

Currently, BF Utilities, Clariant Chemicals, Bombay Burmah Trading Corporation and Aban Offshore are his top picks. Ostwal's net worth is at Rs 10.36 lakh, up 3.58 per cent.

Fund Manager, Centrum Wealth

Fernandes remained inactive during the week. He says now was the time to remain invested as at trailing Sensex PE of about 17.5, the market is cheaper than about a PE of 28 at similar Sensex levels in 2007 and about 19.5 a year ago. Also, domestic confidence levels have improved on the back of policy action where more is expected. However, he adds that high beta stocks may take a breather now.

As of now, BASF India, ITC, Karur Vysya Bank, NESCO and Axis Bank are his top five holdings. Fernandes' net worth is at Rs 10.56 lakh, up 5.62 per cent.

Head, Technical Research,Angel Broking
Kulkarni added Ranbaxy Laboratories and Apollo Hospitals to his portfolio. And, sold Bank of Baroda, Punjab National Bank, Lanco Infratech, Mahindra & Mahindra and V-Guard Industries during the upmove.

Kulkarni says, "Although we have seen some consolidation in the Nifty, the overall undertone is still positive and stock selection will be extremely crucial over the next few sessions. He advices to use corrections up to 5,500 on the Nifty to create long positions." However, he cautions one should not neglect high beta counters as they provide the edge to outperform the overall broader indices.

With this, his top five holdings are Godrej Industries, Shree Renuka Sugars, Apollo Hospitals Enterprise, Ranbaxy Laboratories and Balrampur Chini Mills. Kulkarni's net worth is at Rs 11.20 lakh, up 11.97 per cent.

Fund Manager, Emkay Investment Managers

Shah added two pharma scrips namely Divis Laboratories and Cipla to his kitty. His top holdings as of now include IDFC, Exide Industries, ICICI Bank, Hathway Cable & Datacom and Divis Laboratories. Shah's net worth is at Rs 10.52 lakh, up 5.19 per cent.

Sr VP and Co-Head, Equities, Motilal Oswal AMC - PMS

Badshah picked Aban Offshore and Shasun Pharmaceuticals during the period under review. At the same time, he squared off Punjab National Bank and United Spirits.

Staying invested is the best call in the current scenario, feels Badshah. Even though high beta may be the flavour of the time, it is essential to have a decent balance between good quality defensives and beta stocks. His top five holdings currently are HDFC, HDFC Bank, OnMobile Global, Aban Offshore and Sun TV Network. Badshah's net worth is at Rs 10.59 lakh, up 5.88 per cent.

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