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RBI keeps repo rate unchanged



Indian Economic Update


  • As widely expected the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) kept rates unchanged and maintained the stance as accommodative.
  • MPC revised its Q4 FY2020 through H1 FY2021 forecasts significantly upwards, with inflation only showing some respite in Q3 FY2021 at an expected 3.2%.
  • RBI’s FY2021 growth forecasts were also revised downwards by 100 bps, with expectations of growth recovering above 6% only in Q3 FY2021.
  • India's Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) for the services sector rose to a seven-year high of 55.5 in January as new orders and output increased at the fastest pace in seven years. PMI manufacturing also rose to 55.3, its 8-year high in January. Hiring activity improved in January, with firms increasing employment at the quickest rate in close to seven-and-a-half years.
  • India’s Union Budget FY2021 pegged fiscal deficit to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio at 3.5% for FY2021, while the same for FY2020 was expected to be 3.8%.


Global Update


  • Deaths from the coronavirus outbreak climbed towards 500 and cases worldwide reached almost 25,000. Markets rallied after Chinese television reported possible progress in the hunt for a treatment.
  • China said it would slash tariffs on USD 75 billion of U.S. imports in half as part of its efforts to implement a recently signed trade agreement with Washington.
  • Bank of China cut the 7-day Reverse Repo rate by 10 basis points to 2.4%. It added CNY 900 billion of funds. It also injected CNY 300 billion with 14-day contracts at 2.55%. The total is the largest single-day addition of its kind since 2004, amid attempts to support the economy from the fallout of the coronavirus.
  • The US President has been acquitted by the Senate in the impeachment trial.
  • The Reserve Bank of Australia maintained its official cash rate at a record low of 0.75%.