Economy
Talking to Finance Ministry to launch inflation-indexed bonds: RBI

The move may also help balance trade imbalances as gold import has been jacking up trade deficit which in turn increases current account deficit

Mumbai: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is in talks with the Finance Ministry for launching inflation-indexed bonds, which can help reduce physical demand for gold, its Deputy Governor HR Khan said, reports PTI.

 

The move can also help balance trade imbalances as gold import has been jacking up trade deficit which in turn increases current account deficit.

 

"We are talking to the Finance Ministry to launch inflation-linked bonds, which can help reduce the demand for physical gold," Khan told the FICCI-organised Asian Financial Cooperation Conference.

 

The move can also help arrest imported inflation in the light of the steep fall in the rupee. Typically, according to experts, a 10% fall in the rupee leads to a 100 basis points or 1 percentage point spike in inflation.

 

The rupee has lost nearly 7% this fiscal after losing nearly 18 percent in the last calendar year.

 

It can be noted that last year the country imported 969 tonne gold, which contributed to record current account deficit of 4.2%.

 

This year, however, there is some taming in gold import demand and according to the World Gold Council, this is likely to slide to 800 tonnes, thus losing the years of gold-demand dominance to China by a whisker this year.

 

Both the RBI and the government have been taking steps to reduce gold demand through a series of measures.

 

As gold imports touched a record high last year, pushing up the current account deficit to a historic high of 4.2% in the year, the Reserve Bank has unveiled a slew of curbs on gold purchase and financing.

 

This spike in gold demand was in spite of the record price rally that metal witnessed last fiscal. .

 

In April, the RBI brought down the loan to value or LTV that gold loan companies could offer to just 60% of the market value, from a high of 85-90%. In the 30th October credit policy, the RBI banned banks from offering loans to gold loan companies and NBFCs for buying gold.

 

The government on its part had increased the import duty on gold in the Budget.

 

RBI had also advised banks to not extend loans for purchase of gold.

 

Addressing the annual banking conference in Pune last Saturday, another deputy governor Subir Gokarn had said there was an urgent need to "dematerialise" gold like any other financial product, which could help reduce physical imports of the precious metal that is in turn leading to the current macroeconomic stress.

 

"High gold import is creating some macroeconomic stresses and so the challenge is to find ways to replicate the financial characteristics of gold without necessarily causing physically importing," Gokarn had said.

 

Gokarn had also said an RBI working group head by KUB Rao would shortly submit a report on the ways to deal with the problem arising from high gold imports on the macroeconomic front in the form of balance of payments.

 

Gokarn had said while global gold output has stayed stable at around 4,000 tonne per year, domestic consumption has doubled to 1,000 tonne annually since 1999, despite a massive rally in the prices.

 

Last fiscal there was a 39% rise in gold imports and in gross terms, constituting 80% of the CAD of 4.2% of GDP. Net gold import constituted 1.8-2.4% of GDP.

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COMMENTS

Vinay

4 years ago

Gold import is a symptom. Bad governance is the disease.

They need to treat the disease, not the symptom.

Hyderabad police arrests two hackers from Noida

Police arrested two hackers from Noida for allegedly duping several persons of Rs72 lakh through internet banking

Noida: A police team from Hyderabad has arrested two hackers from Noida for allegedly duping several persons to the tune of Rs72 lakh through internet banking, reports PTI.

 

The accused, identified as Jalaludin and Shobit, have confessed to their involvement in the crimes, an official said.

 

The duo was taken to Sector-20 police station here before being taken to Hyderabad.

 

Their location was traced by the police team through electronic surveillance and cyber connectivity details, they said.

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Indian stock markets closed for Guru Nanak Jayanti

Indian stock, bond and forex markets will remain closed today on account of Guru Nanak Jayanti. Normal trading will resume on Thursday.

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