Citicorp shares dipped Tuesday after a prominent market watcher turned more pessimistic about its exposure to foreign markets.
Ronald I. Mandle, a chief banking analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co., reduced earnings estimates and ratings on Citicorp and several other big banks that do business overseas.
Just three weeks ago, in the wake of the major market selloff on Oct. 27, Mr. Mandle dismissed Asian worries for Citicorp-and others with exposure-as "overdone" and rated the bank's shares "market outperform."
But in a report issued late Monday, Mr. Mandle expressed concern that the economic crisis has spread beyond Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Thailand, to markets such as Brazil and Korea, where Citicorp has additional exposure.
He lowered his rating on Citicorp to "market perform" and reduced his estimate of 1997 earnings per share by 10 cents, to $8.40. He also reduced his 1998 earnings estimate by 30 cents per share, to $9.35, citing vulnerability to the emerging economies.
Citicorp shares fell $2.8125, to $119.25, for the day.
Among other stocks that have exposure overseas, BankAmerica Corp. rose $2.3125, to $75.3125, Chase Manhattan was down 56.25 cents, to $109.4375, and J.P. Morgan was up 50 cents, to $113.4375.
Bankers Trust New York Corp. also has extensive operations in foreign markets, but its shares were boosted Tuesday by reports that the company is in negotiations to buy a large part of the equities business of Natwest Group PLC. Bankers Trust shares rose $1.6875, to $117.375, for the day.
Some investors took the reassessments in stride. "There may be problems, but I think the stocks already reflect that" from hits they took in the past two weeks, said James Schmidt, executive vice president with John Hancock Funds.
For the day, the Standard & Poor's bank index rose 0.96%, and the Dow Jones industrial average was up 0.53%. The Nasdaq bank index increased by 0.21%, and the S&P 500 gained 0.44%.
Synovus Financial Corp. was up $4.75, to $31.50, after it was named to replace Salomon Brothers in the S&P 500. Travelers Group is slated to acquire Salomon Brothers, following Tuesday's approval of the deal by Salomon shareholders.
S&P wanted a financial institution because that sector is under- represented in the S&P 500, said James Fazio, an analyst with the credit rating firm.
With $8.6 billion of assets and $5.3 billion market capitalization, Synovus, based in Columbus, Ga., fit S&P's parameters for the next addition to the 500 benchmark, Mr. Fazio said. Silicon Valley Bancshares rose $2.125, to $51.25, after Joseph K. Morford of BT Alex. Brown raised his rating to a "strong buy" from a "buy."
National City Corp. issued a clarification concerning the share buyback that was reported in American Banker Tuesday. The Cleveland banking company said it has authorized the purchase of up to 20 million shares, subject to a purchase limit of $1.4 billion.
National City said it had made no statement about its cash position and set no timetable for the program.