RBI likely to use CRR tool again
Notwithstanding the better-than-expected inflation and industrial production numbers of late, most economists, however, feel that central bank will wait until January to cut interest rates.
Deposit growth has hit a nine-year low, slipping below 13% in the fortnight ended November 30, as against 15% projected by the RBI for 2012-13. Over the last two years, deposit growth has fallen from around 17% to 13% as customers left them for other assets like realty and gold because high inflation shaved off returns. If bankers are to be believed, deposit growth is unlikely to improve significantly during the rest of this financial year. The widening gap between deposit growth and credit growth has resulted in the liquidity deficit increasing. The RBI endeavours to keep liquidity in deficit of 1% of banks’ deposits so as to avoid crimping credit offtake.
Credit growth was a healthy 17% until November as projected by the central bank while deposit growth fell to 12.76% in the fortnight ended November 30.
According to Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, current deposit growth is insufficient to meet credit offtake. “On our part, we expect the RBI to cut the CRR,” the bank said in a note.
Banks’ borrowings from the RBI’s repo tender, a loose gauge of systemic liquidity, hit R1.29 lakh crore on Friday. While part of the
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