RBI leaves benchmark lending rate unchanged at 4 per cent : The Tribune India

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RBI leaves benchmark lending rate unchanged at 4 per cent

This is the tenth time in a row that the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) headed by RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das has maintained the status quo



PTI

Mumbai, February 10

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Thursday kept the benchmark interest rate unchanged at 4 per cent and decided to continue with its accommodative stance in the backdrop of an elevated level of inflation.

This is the tenth time in a row that the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) headed by RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das has maintained the status quo.

The RBI had last revised its policy repo rate or the short-term lending rate on May 22, 2020 in an off-policy cycle to perk up demand by cutting the interest rate to a historic low.

This is the first MPC meeting after presentation of Budget 2022-23 in Parliament on February 1.

The MPC has decided to keep benchmark repurchase (repo) rate at 4 per cent, Das said while announcing the bi-monthly monetary policy review.

Consequently, the reverse repo rate will continue to earn 3.35 per cent interest for banks for their deposits kept with the RBI.

Das said the MPC voted unanimously for keeping interest rate unchanged and decided to continue with its accommodative stance as long as necessary to support growth and keep inflation within the target.

The RBI retained its growth projection at 9.2 per cent and inflation at 5.3 per cent for the current financial year.

Retail inflation rose to a five-month high of 5.59 per cent in December from 4.91 per cent in November, mainly due to an uptick in food prices.

The MPC has been given the mandate to maintain annual inflation at 4 per cent until March 31, 2026, with an upper tolerance of 6 per cent and a lower tolerance of 2 per cent.

The bi-monthly policy comes against the backdrop of the Budget wherein a nominal gross GDP of 11.1 per cent has been estimated for 2022-23.

The government expects this growth to be fuelled by a massive capital spending programme outlined in the Budget with a view to crowding-in private investment by reinvigorating economic activities and creating demand.

RBI’s monetary policy highlights

New Delhi: Following are the highlights of the RBI’s monetary policy statement 2021-22.

*Benchmark lending rate kept unchanged 10th time in a row at 4 pc, reverse repo rate at 3.35 pc

*Projects GDP growth at 7.8 pc for next fiscal, against 9.2 pc this fiscal

*India charting different course of recovery than rest of the world; to be fastest growing economy       

*RBI to continue with accommodative stance to revive and sustain growth; pandemic holds global economy hostage

*Retail inflation projected at 5.3 pc for current fiscal, 4.5 pc in FY23

*Inflation to peak in the current quarter within tolerance band, moderating in the second half of next fiscal

*Hardening global crude oil prices present upside risk to inflation     

*Indian rupee showed resilience in the face of global spillovers

*Current account deficit to be below 2 pc of GDP in current fiscal    

*Overall system liquidity remains in large surplus

*RBI would continue to insulate domestic economy from global spillovers

*RBI extends by 3 months on-tap liquidity facility of Rs 50,000 crore for health care, contact intensive sector

*E RUPI digital voucher cap raised from Rs 10,000 to Rs 1 lakh and multiple-use permitted

*Next meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) is scheduled during April 6-8. PTI

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