Posts Tagged ‘repo and reverse repo rates’

RBI Increases CRR, Kicked off its War against Inflation

RBI Increases CRR, Kicked off its War against Inflation

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The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has kicked off its war against inflation and build-up of inflationary pressures by announcing a surprise increase of 75 basis points in the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR).

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Cash reserve ratio is the minimum liquid assets, banks have to retain against deposits or park with the central bank in the form of government securities.

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The CRR will be hiked in two stages : 50 basis points from Feb 13 and another 25 basis from Feb 27 – from the present 5 percent, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor D Subbarao told.

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However, in a cautious move not to disrupt the money supply, the RBI left the key policy rates – repo and reverse repo – unchanged.

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“As a result of this increase in the CRR, about Rs.36,000 crore of excess liquidity will be absorbed from the system,” Subbarao added, as he presented the third quarterly update of the central bank’s monetary policy for this fiscal.

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Subbarao said the cut in excess liquidity will help anchor inflationary expectations and that the recovery process of the economy will be supported without compromising on price stability.

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As inflation was steadily growing and the economy was slowly returning to higher growth trajectory, it was expected that the RBI would tighten monetary policy.

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But the 75-bps hike, according to investors, is a “more hawkish” move than many expected.

The market had expected and was prepared for a 50-bps hike.

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Central bank has said the action was necessary as the “rapidly rising” food inflation was putting pressure on other sectors as well.

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India’s inflation jumped to 7.31 percent in December, 2009 from 4.78 percent in November, mainly driven by high food prices.

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The questions cropping up as a result of this move are :

-Will this move by the central bank going to check the inflation?

-Moreover, what implications this step holds for the economic growth?

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