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‘RBI announces Open Market Operation ’

  • Category
    Economy
  • Published
    7th Sep, 2020

The RBI had announced simultaneous purchase and sale of government securities under Open Market Operation (OMO) for an aggregate amount of ?20,000 crores in two tranches of ?10,000 crores each.

Context

The RBI had announced simultaneous purchase and sale of government securities under Open Market Operation (OMO) for an aggregate amount of ?20,000 crores in two tranches of ?10,000 crores each.

About

What is Open Market Operation?

  • Open market operations are conducted by the RBI by way of sale or purchase of government securities (g-secs) to adjust money supply conditions.
  • The central bank sells g-secs to suck out liquidity from the system and buys back g-secs to infuse liquidity into the system.
  • These operations are often conducted on a day-to-day basis in a manner that balances inflation while helping banks continue to lend.
  • The RBI uses OMO along with other monetary policy tools such as repo rate, cash reserve ratio and statutory liquidity ratio to adjust the quantum and price of money in the system.
  • The Reserve Bank reserves the right to decide-
    • on the quantum of purchase/sale of individual securities
    • accept bids/offers for less than the aggregate amount
    • purchase/sell marginally higher/lower than the aggregate amount due to rounding-off
    • accept or reject any or all the bid/offers either wholly or partially without assigning any reasons.

Importance of OMO

  • Smoothens the availability of money: In India, liquidity conditions usually tighten during the second half of the financial year (mid-October onwards).
    • This happens because the pace of government expenditure usually slows down, even as the onset of the festival season leads to a seasonal spike in currency demand.
    • Moreover, activities of foreign institutional investors, advance tax payments, etc. also cause an ebb and flow of liquidity.
    • However, the RBI smoothens the availability of money through the year to make sure that liquidity conditions don’t impact the ideal level of interest rates it would like to maintain in the economy.
  • Liquidity management: Liquidity management is also essential so that banks and their borrowers don’t face a cash crunch. The RBI buys g-secs if it thinks systemic liquidity needs a boost and offloads them if it wants to mop up excess money.
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