June 13, 2018 / 4:35 AM / 11 days ago

BUZZ-India's KEC Int'l rises; Macquarie starts with "outperform"

** Shares of KEC International Ltd climb as much as 3.9 pct to 384 rupees - highest since May 18

** Macquarie Research initiates coverage on stock with “outperform” rating, price target at 454 rupees

** “While power transmission and distribution is a well-established business, we are more enthused by KECL’s well thought-out diversification strategy into related businesses like railway electrification and civil” - Macquarie in note

** Brokerage expects the utility projects construction company to benefit from state spending on transmission and distribution

** KECL is one of the few companies in the construction space which has not raised equity for a decade and does not need to raise equity to fund growth as leverage has already come down from 2.4x in FY 2016 to 0.8x currently, analysts add

** Over 371,000 shares changed hands vs. 30-day moving avg of 599,010

** 21 of the 26 analysts covering the stock have a “buy” or higher rating, 4 have “hold” while 1 rates it a “strong sell”; median PT is 440 rupees - Thomson Reuters data

** Up to Tuesday’s close, stock had risen about 42 pct in 12 months

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