May 23, 2019 / 5:50 AM / 4 months ago

BUZZ-India's Bank of Baroda sees best day in 1-1/2 yrs as Q4 loss narrows

** Bank of Baroda Ltd shares rise as much as 14.2% to 144 rupees, their biggest pct gain since Oct. 2017

** The majority state-owned lender’s March-qtr loss narrowed by more than three times to 9.91 bln rupees ($142.6 mln), helped by lower provisions

** Provisions and contingencies down 19.1% and provisions for NPA down 21%

** Morgan Stanley maintains ‘underweight’ given uncertainty around CEO continuity and earnings outlook amid merger with Dena Bank and Vijaya Bank

** Pre-provision operating profit momentum will remain strong for the bank; expects return on equities of 14% for BOB standalone by FY21 - Nomura

** In comparison, peers Bank of India Ltd posted a qtrly profit, while Canara Bank Ltd loss narrowed in same period

** Broader NSE Index up as much as 2.6% at 12,041.15 points, while NIFTY bank index up as much as 7.7% as election trends show second term for Prime Minister Modi ($1 = 69.5010 Indian rupees)

Reporting by Harish Bhaskar in Bengaluru

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