Reliance Industries - Merill Lynch maintains 'buy' rating

Report and target from Merill Lynch on Reliance Industries (RIL) based on recent happenings in company financials, industry & economy.

CMP: Rs 1,120
Target price: Rs 1,555

Merill Lynch has cut its price objective on Reliance Industries (RIL) by 15% from Rs 1,825 to Rs 1,555 based on sum of the parts valuation. However, it continues to retain its ‘buy’ on the stock. The brokerage says that the cut is due to cut in the value of its refining business and value of its investment in RPL.

The former has been cut by 56% to Rs 168 per share and the latter by 39% to Rs 137 per share. “We have steeply cut Singapore complex refining margins forecast for financial year (FY) 2010 and 2011 (expected). Consequently, refining margins of Reliance Industries (RIL) and refining subsidiary Reliance Petroleum (RPL), too, have been steeply cut,” the report said.

The cut is relatively modest assuming a weaker rupee, it adds. RIL’s presence in E&P and petrochemicals also helped dilute impact of refining margin cut on RIL. The report says that the key risks include failure in the retail business, and changes in government policies like withdrawal of the tax holiday which may have a direct impact on the business, cash flow and profit, among other things.