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Crash Unlikely

Anand Shah feels that the market being volatile is possible, but it won't crash. This IIM alumnus manages two ICICI funds. Find out more about him

Anand Shah is an electronics engineer from REC Surat. Soon after graduation, he joined Kirolskar Oil Engines for two years before taking up studies again. Subsequently, he passed out from IIM (Lucknow) in 2000 with a specialisation in finance. Soon after, he joined Kotak on the buy side as an analyst. His role entailed research on various sectors and companies after which he moved to fund management. He joined Prudential ICICI AMC in January this year where he manages two funds - ICICI Pru Power and ICICI Pru Fusion S-II.

Do you see a market crash in the near future?
The rise is the reflection of very strong GDP growth rates in the last three years and expectation of the same being sustained in the foreseeable future. We believe that strong earnings growth of India Inc will sustain going forward and thus market valuations are reasonable on a one-year forward earnings basis. Also, the balance sheet of India Inc is stronger then ever. We are of the opinion that the market might remain volatile in times to come, however a market crash is unlikely.

What is the strategic and tactical orientation of ICICI Prudential Power?
Power fund is a diversified equity fund with a strong bias towards large caps. The fund will continue to focus on bottom-up stock picking and pursue growth ideas. Within the mid-caps, its focus is towards sectors with secular growth opportunities that individual companies can pursue to become large-cap companies.

Which are your top sector preferences?
Capital Goods
Capital goods companies would be one of the largest beneficiaries of investments by government in infrastructure and by investments of the corporate sector in new capacities. The media sector would be one of the key indirect beneficiaries of growing consumerism of the large Indian middle class population, which is benefiting from rising job opportunities and ever-increasing salary levels.

This interview appeared in the October 2007 issue of Mutual Fund Insight.