BNP Paribas, a French bank headquartered in Paris, has sold off another 1.80 percent of its stake in Shinhan Financial Group, trimming its total interest in the South Korean lender to 3.55 percent, according to local banking sources on Friday.
BNP Paribas sold 8.5 million Shinhan Financial shares in after-hour trade on Wednesday for an estimated $317 million, or 43,500 won per share. The French bank is now the fourth largest shareholder in Shinahn Financial behind the National Pension Service (9.25 percent), BlackRock Fund Advisors (5.13 percent) and the bank’s employee stock ownership association (4.75 percent).
The stock price of Shinhan Financial Group has gained more than 20 percent in the past year thanks to strong earnings and on expectations for higher interest rates. In 2013, BNP Paribas sold its 1 percent stake in the Korean bank when the stock price hit 47,000 won.
“The transaction is consistent with our financial management strategy and we are not planning on additional sale. We are committed to a long-standing alliance with Shinhan Financial Group as a key shareholder and board member,” said a BNP Paribas spokesperson.
Shinhan Financial shares closed Friday at 45,300 won, up 0.44 percent or 200 won from the previous session.
By Kim Tae-sung
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