oppn parties RBI Cuts Rate, Changes Stance To Accommodative

News Snippets

  • The government decides to decriminalize more than two-thirds of penal sections in the Companies Act
  • Muslim groups tell the Supreme Court that they want the Babri Masjid to be restored
  • Muslim groups claim that while they were asked questions in court, Hindus were not questioned
  • Postpaid mobile services restored in Jammu & Kashmir from today, but still no internet
  • Abhijit Banerjee, an Indian-American currently a professor at MIT, wins the 2019 Noble prize in economics jointly with two others
  • Industrial output slumps in August as the IIP shrinks by 1.1%
  • Prime Minister Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping watch a cultural show at the Shore Temple in Mamallapuram
  • J&K administration lifts the ban on entry of tourists in the Valley, but it remains doubtful how many will visit without being able to use mobile phones and internet
  • After Sena asks members to support the BJP candidate in Kalyan, 26 party corporators and 300 members resign setting off a crisis
  • The Centre sets up a 12-member committee to suggest systemic changes in the GST structure to improve compliance and collection, prevent misuse and evasion and rationalize rates and slabs
  • In line with the RBI outlook on the Indian economy, rating firm Moody's also downgrades growth forecast from 6.8% to 5.8% this year, saying the economy is experiencing a pronounced slowdown
  • HDFC chairman Deepak Parekh says the financial system in India does not offer foolproof security for misuse of the savings of the common man
  • Shivinder Singh and Malvinder Singh, promoters of Ranbaxy and Fortis, arrested for their role in Religare Finvest scam
  • Supreme Court says marriage can be dissolved if it has broken down irretrievably
  • DA of Central government staff hiked by 5% to 17%
Sourav Ganguly is the new president of BCCI, says conflict of interest is a big concern
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RBI Cuts Rate, Changes Stance To Accommodative

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Sunil Garodia By our team of in-house writers.

Benign inflation, slowing economy and the return of NDA (that assures continuity in policy and the hope of a renewed sense of fiscal responsibility on the part of the government) has allowed the RBI to change its policy stance from neutral to accommodative and reduce the key repo rate by 25 basis points to 5.75 percent, the lowest since September 2010. The change in stance also means that further rate cuts are in the offing.

Although the markets were not enthused by the rate cut (the Sensex crashed by 554 points after the announcement) there are many positives in the RBI decision. All economic indicators are signaling a slowdown with demand for goods and services not picking up. Some sectors are showing negative growth. Although it is true that projects are not dependent only on the interest rates (promoters factor in the cost of acquiring capital in their overall project costs and go for the project if they can sell the products after acquiring capital at current interest rates), it is also true that some projects that seemed unviable at high interest rates may become viable at lower costs. Lower interest rates on retail loans may also spur the demand for goods thereby giving a boost to the manufacturing sector.

The economy needs a push and making capital available at a lower cost is one of the ways to encourage entrepreneurs to expand capacity or go for new projects. The RBI has made it known that it will prod the banks to pass on the benefit to customers. If there is a renewed demand for products due to cheaper loans which in turn encourages entrepreneurs to expand or install new projects then the economy will come out of the morass it seems to be sliding in. But the government will have to play its part by keeping a tight control on fiscal deficit and making investments in infrastructure.