Istanbul-listed refiner Tupras’ shares fall 2% as BlackRock shifts positions

Istanbul-listed refiner Tupras’ shares fall 2% as BlackRock shifts positions
By Akin Nazli in Belgrade February 7, 2020

World’s largest asset manager BlackRock at the end of last week raised its stake in top Turkish refiner Tupras (TUPRS) to 5.01% from 4.977%, buying 71,297 shares at an average price of Turkish lira (TRY) 114.3, the New York-based corporation said in a stock exchange filing. But that was just a precursor to another move.

The transaction sealed at the end of last week accounted for 0.03% of Tupras’ total share capital, 0.06% of its free-floating shares and 4% of its average daily trading volume in 2019, Seker Invest calculated.

On February 3, Blackrock said in another filing that it sold 35,924 Tupras shares at an average price of TRY113.2, shifting its stake to 4.99% of the refiner.

Tupras shares were trading at TRY112.9 as of 18:10 local time on February 7, down 2% from the intraday high of 116.1 on January 31.

Tupras is planning to release its Q4 financials on February 12.

Shareholders that have a more-than-5% stake in a Borsa Istanbul-listed company are obliged to inform public disclosure platform KAP of any transactions in the company’s shares.

Investors classified as foreign mostly sold Tupras ($189mn) and Turkish Airlines ($126mn) shares in January.

BlackRock, which worldwide has more than $7 trillion under management, has also been shifting positions in Turkish Airlines stock. Its stake in the flagship carrier has been moving above and below the 5% threshold.

The most active stock by far on the Borsa Istanbul lately has been that of Turkish Airlines, following the short-selling bans introduced by officials on the most active banking stocks in October. Traders are treating Turkish Airlines shares as a source of lira funding by shorting them.

On July 16, Blackrock said it had increased its stake in Turkish Airlines to 5.06% from 4.96%. On August 23, the investment giant said its stake in Turkish Airlines had declined to 4.96% from 5.24%.

On November 14, BlackRock increased its stake to 5.12% from 4.485% by purchasing 8.69mn shares at an average price of TRY13.57. On January 6,  Blackrock’s stake declined to 4.85% from 5.12% after it sold 3.8mn shares at an average price of TRY13.6. That amounted to a 0.3% stake in the airline and 5% of the average daily trading volume.

BlackRock was among investment funds present at a meeting held on November 15 in London between Istanbul mayor and Erdogan administration opponent Ekrem Imamoglu and finance industry representatives.

On June 25 last year, BlackRock said it had increased its stake in Turkish gold miner Koza Altin to 5.01% from 4.94%. On August 16 Blackrock’s stake in Koza Altin declined to 4.99% from 5.01%.

In February 2018, it was the top buyer in largest Turkish electricity distributor Enerjisa Enerji’s initial public offering (IPO).

BlackRock also has stakes in state-controlled Halkbank—currently in a battle with New York prosecutors attempting to bring it to trial on an indictment alleging Iran sanctions-busting—and real estate investment trust Emlak Konut REIT.

The global investment management corporation is at the same time the biggest single holder of Turkish government bonds.

As of February 6, Tupras accounted for 5.11% (fifth largest stock) in BlackRock’s iShares MSCI Turkey ETF while Turkish Airlines accounted for 3.54% (9th), Halkbank 2.18%, Koza Altin 1.76%, Emlak had 1.56% and Enerjisa 1.16%.