ISTANBUL - Referans

The value of banking shares declined dramatically as the Istanbul Stock Exchange, or IMKB, has lost value by 37.5 percent since the beginning of the year, due largely to the ongoing global credit crunch and increasing domestic political uncertainty. The value of banks, whose shares suffered severely from the market slump, took a dive during the last year, as the overall market value of the companies dropped by approximately $100 billion to $187.6 billion. Hence, domestic shareholders who sold their banks or handed over shares to foreigners in the last three years have made big profits.

Zorlu happy with sale:
�Considering the sale price and today's price, I am satisfied with my sale decision,� Zorlu Holding Chairman Ahmet Zorlu told business daily Referans Monday, commenting on the sale of Denizbank. The bank was valued at $3.25 billion when Zorlu sold 75 percent to Dexia. The bank's value, considering its share price, stands at $1.8 billion today. Dexia paid $2.4 billion for 75 percent of Denizbank, the current value of which stands at $1.3 billion.
Dışbank, whose 89.3 percent was purchased by Fortis at a value of $1.26 billion, is valued at $711 million today. Finansbank's 46 percent stake was sold for $5.05 billion. However, the bank's current value is around $4.3 billion. Şekerbank's current value, meanwhile, amounts to 12.6 percent of its sale value.
Akbank's value dropped 31 percent compared to the value it had during the sale of its 20 percent shares to Citibank, which paid $3.1 billion for 20 percent of the bank. The current value of the aforementioned shares is $2.1 billion.
Despite the slump in banking shares, foreign investors assess Turkey with a long-term perspective, analysts say. The high potential for growth in the sector will result in intense interest during the sale of public banks, many argue.

Three banks increase value:
Despite the slump, there are three banks that have managed to attain market values higher than their sale values. The Turkish Economy Bank, or TEB, was valued at $515 million during the sale of its 42.12 percent stake to BNP. The bank's current market value is $951 million.
Garanti Bank trades at 68.7 percent over the value determined during the sale of its shares to General Electric. Meanwhile, Yapı Kredi's value climbed 144 percent compared to the value during its sale in 2005.