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Call Money

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Lesson 4

Call Money
After reading this lesson, you will be conversant with: Participants and Purpose of Call Market Developments in Indian Call Market Role of Reserve Bank of India Call Markets in Other Countries

Treasury Management: Theory and Practice

Introduction
The call money market is a part of the money market and refers to the overweight funds lent and borrowed, mostly by banks for daily liquidity management. Call/Notice money is an amount borrowed or lent for a very short period. If the period is more than one day and up to 14 days it is called „Notice Money‟, otherwise the amount is called „Call Money‟. Under call money market, funds are transacted on overnight basis and under notice money market, funds are transacted for the period between 2 days and 14 days. The call money market is most liquid of all short-term money market segments and it is also the most sensitive barometer measuring the liquidity conditions prevailing in financial markets. The call money is the money repayable on demand. The maturity period of call loans varies between 1 to 14 days. The money that is lent for one day in call money market is also known as „overnight money‟. The number of days is specified and the call money has to be repaid on the due date. The intimation for repayment enables the borrower to arrange the money on the due date and the duration of notice money is similar to that of call money i.e., up to 14 days. Therefore, the notice money is not seen in the market. The Indian call money market deals only with call money. The money that is lent for more than 14 days is referred to as „term money‟. In call money market, any amount could be lent or borrowed at an interest rate, which is acceptable to both borrower and lender. These loans are considered as highly liquid; as they are repayable on due date which is usually the next day. Initially, banks were only permitted to deal in this market; it was then referred as „Inter bank market‟.

Participants
All scheduled commercial banks (private sector, public sector and cooperative banks), Primary Dealers (PDs), development finance institutions, select insurance companies and select mutual funds operate in call/notice markets. Intermediaries like State Bank of India-Discount and Finance House of India (SBIDFHI) and Securities Trading Corporation of India Limited (STCI) and Primary Dealers (PDs) are the participants in the local call money markets. The corporate participation in call money market has been very small. Previously, the non-bank participants like the financial institutions and the mutual funds were also allowed to participate in the call market. The Non-bank institutions are given specific permission to operate in call/notice money market can, and operate as lenders only. The banks and Primary Dealers can borrow and lend money in this market but mutual funds and select corporate can participate only in lending money. The participants under the category of banks can be divided into two types: pre-dominant lenders (mostly the public sector banks) and pre-dominant borrowers (foreign and private sector banks). Based on the Committee Report on Banking Sector Reforms (1998), suggestion, RBI carried out a “basic restructuring of call money market” to make it a pure inter bank market and no new non-bank institution is permitted to operate (i.e., lend) in the call/notice money market with effect from May 5, 2001. The RBI decided to completely phase out non-banking participants from call/notice money markets with effect from August 06, 2005. Table 1: Participants in Call/Notice Money Market Borrowers Scheduled Commercial Banks (excluding RRBs) Co-operative Banks Primary Dealers (PDs) Lenders Scheduled Commercial Banks (excluding RRBs) Co-operative Banks Primary Dealers (PDs) Select all-India Financial Institutions Select Insurance Companies Select Mutual Funds

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Hence based on the recommendation of the Technical Group on Phasing Out of Non-banks from Call/Notice Money Market a complete withdrawal of non-bank participants from the call/notice money market was taken up by the RBI simultaneously operationalizing the Clearing Corporation. Their operations were phased out in a gradual manner so as to cause no disruption in the call money market. The intermediaries like SBI-DFHI and STCI and Primary Dealers (PDs) namely, Punjab Gilts, Gilt Securities Trading Corporation (GSTC) and ICICI Securities and Finance Corporation Ltd., are the only institutions besides commercial banks which have been permitted to operate both as borrowers and lenders in this market. Those who form a part of the market by being borrowers as well as lenders are collectively referred to as the “banking system”.

Purpose
In India, call money is lent mainly to even out the short-term mismatches of assets and liabilities and to meet CRR requirements of banks. Some banks may borrow and lend simultaneously from the market if they find an opportunity to arbitrage. Firstly, the short-term mismatches arise due to variation in maturities, i.e., the deposits mobilized are deployed by the bank at a longer maturity to earn more returns and duration of withdrawal of deposits by customers vary (since it is effectively a demand liability). Thus, banks borrow from call money markets to meet short-term maturity mismatches such as large payments and remittances. Secondly, the banks borrow from this market to meet the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) requirements, which they should maintain with RBI every fortnight. Cash Reserve Ratio represents the balances to be maintained by banks with the RBI, which is computed as a percentage of the Net Demand and Time Liabilities (NDTL). Thirdly, money is borrowed in the call/notice market for short periods to discount commercial bills. The volume of call loans is thus very small in India, due to underdeveloped bill markets. Thus, the utility of the call money to meet short-term mismatches forms a significant volume when compared to other purposes.

Call Rates
The interest paid on call loans is known as the call rates. Though the rate quoted in the market is annualized one, the rate of interest on call money is calculated on a daily basis. The call rate is expected to freely reflect the day-to-day market scarcities or lack of funds. These rates vary from day-to-day and within the day, often from hour-to-hour. High rates indicate a tightness of liquidity in the financial system while low rates indicate an easy liquidity position in the market. The rate is largely subjected to influence by the forces of supply and demand for funds. In India, rates in the call market are prone to fluctuations, which are unidirectional. This is due to limited number of players with similar needs. OPERATIONAL MECHANISM Once the deal is struck the funds are immediately available to the borrowing bank and are repaid with interest on the next/due date. The funds are lent and paid back through a banker‟s pay order, which is cleared by the special high value clearing cell in the RBI. LOCATION In India, call money markets are mainly located in main commercial and big industrial centers such as Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Delhi and Ahmedabad. This is due to the existence of stock markets in these places. Mumbai and Kolkata play a significant role in trading as compared to the other places. Due to the location of the biggest stock exchange, various head offices of the RBI and many other banks, Mumbai plays a predominant role in determining the call rates based on demand and supply volumes of call loans. 251

Treasury Management: Theory and Practice

DEVELOPMENT OF CALL MONEY MARKET Characteristics of Indian Call Markets in Pre-liberalization Period
A closer look into the early workings of this market reveals the following salient features: The Indian call market was a restricted market with a narrow base and limited number of participants. Banks and a few all India Financial Institutions participated in the market and the entry of others into the market was tightly regulated. The existing participants, lacked an active market as there were few lenders and a large number of borrowers. Another feature was that the market was considerably organized with a large part of the dealings taking place in Mumbai and Kolkata. Chennai and Delhi played a secondary role in this activity. There was no ceiling on the call money rates and the movements were quite erratic. The forces of supply and demand for funds largely influenced the call rates. In India, call rates are prone to fluctuations, which are unidirectional, due to the presence of a large number of players with similar needs. The call loans were also subjected to seasonal fluctuations, and the call rates usually climbed high during busy seasons than in slack seasons. The seasonal ups and downs were reflected in the volume of money at call and short-notice, at different periods of time in a year. These seasonal variations were high due to a limited number of lenders and many borrowers. REASONS FOR HIGH VOLATILITY i. Large borrowings by banks to meet the CRR requirements on certain dates cause a great demand for call rates. These rates usually go up during the first week when banks borrow mostly to meet CRR requirements and subside in the second week once the CRR requirements are met. ii. Due to over-extension of loans in excess of their own resources, the banks depend on call market. They use the call market as a source of funds to meet structural disequilibria in their sources and uses of funds. No bank may continuously rely on call market for funding credit since it attracts adverse comments from the RBI. However, the market may experience the presence of a few at any point of time.

iii.

The withdrawal of funds to meet business requirements by institutional lenders and payment of advance tax by the corporate sector leads to increase in call money rates in the market. iv. The banks invest funds in Government securities, units of UTI, public sector bonds in order to maximize the earnings from their funds management. But with no buyers in the market, these instruments tend to become illiquid which leads to the liquidity crises. Call money being highly liquid, banks use it to pool the funds from the call market, significantly pushing up the call rates. Thus, liquidity crisis or illiquidity in the money markets also contributes to the volatility in call market. As discussed above, the Indian call money market consisted of a few large lenders and a large number of borrowers. The absence of participants who alternate between borrowing and lending activity has, in someway, inhibited the active development of this market. The year 1970 emerged as a remarkable year in the history of Indian call money market when the term lending institutions like LIC and UTI were allowed to lend in the market. The SBI, which was away from the market till „70s, entered as a major lender and a small borrower. LIC and UTI were considered to be institutions with a sizable short-term float which could usefully augment the supply of funds. Deployment of funds in the call market helped UTI to maintain its liquidity, i.e., to meet its short-term commitments such as, large repurchases from unit holders as and when necessary. 252

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The entry of SBI, UTI and LIC, as lenders, has pumped the funds, which activated the call market. The movement of call rates in the market was quite volatile till 1973. It was quite difficult to tap the money in call market for needy banks at a reasonable cost as the call rates were reaching dizzy heights. Up to December, 1973, there was no ceiling on the call money rate. After observing the high rates for relatively prolonged periods, the Indian Banks Association (IBA) intervened and fixed a ceiling of 15% on the call money rates. The ceiling was reduced gradually over the years and in March, 1978, it was reduced to 8.5%. Later in April, 1980, it was increased to 10% and since then it remained around the same till 1988.

Early Liberalization Scenario
Several significant efforts were made to develop money markets after 1985. Two committees were set-up to review the working of the Monetary System and Money Market, which provided fresh insights to improve the working of the call money market. In 1985, the Sukhamoy Chakravarthy Committee, which was set-up to review the working of the Monetary System, suggested that additional non-bank institutional participants should be brought into the call money market. In 1987, the Vaghul Committee, set-up to review the money markets in India, suggested that the discount house should be set-up and ceiling on the interbank call money rate should be removed to activate the money market. The RBI had taken few steps following the Vaghul Committee recommendations: In May, 1988, the interbank rates both on the call money and term money were freed/deregulated. In October, 1988, Discount and Finance House of India (DFHI) was set-up. It was permitted to borrow/lend and also arrange funds in the call money market. Later, it merged with SBI and has become SBI-DFHI. In May 1990, the RBI allowed all the financial institutions such as GIC, IDBI and NABARD, etc., to operate as lenders in the overnight call and notice money market. In April, 1991, the RBI permitted corporate entity with surplus lendable resources to access the call money through the SBI-DFHI. It set a minimum size of Rs.5 crore for each transaction and, further, the lender had to give an undertaking that he had no outstanding loans from the banking sector to operate in this market. The entry of financial institutions, permitting of public sector and private sector mutual funds, money market mutual funds, primary dealers and others into the market, channelized the funds flow into call markets, thereby reducing the demand-supply gap in the recent years. The few significant changes initiated by the Central Bank brought greater integration of the various segments of the money market. The base of call market has been widened by selective increase in the participants as lenders, especially, led to an increase in supply of funds in the call money market. The entry of SBIDFHI and STCI and primary/satellite dealers promoted an orderly development of the call market.

Institutional Participation in the Call Money Market
Table 2 gives an overview of the average turnover of the call loans for a fortnight according to the type of the institution. The supply of loans in the call money market has increased due to the entry of other institutions like LIC, GIC and UTI, etc. This has also enabled those institutions to have more choice in investing their funds and have more return on the investments. Another advantage is the integration of the financial markets in the economy. There are some critical issues in this regard. One is whether the long-term funds can be allowed in the short-term market. It becomes tough to match maturities when the participants having short-term liabilities create long-term assets. Another issue relates to the impact on the effectiveness of the monetary policy due to direct participation of these institutions in the market. Because these institutions are 253

Treasury Management: Theory and Practice

outside the banking system they can weaken the controls laid down by the RBI. Consequently, the working group on the money market has advised that the ceiling on call rates should be removed and the call money market should be exclusive to only commercial banks. The RBI has regulated other institutions like LIC, GIC, UTI to participate in the call market as lenders only. The minimum size of operations is Rs.20 crore per single transaction. Later it was gradually reduced to Rs.3 crore. Prior permission of the RBI is compulsory to participate in the market and they have to participate through the SBI-DFHI only. A critical view of the call market holds is that the lenders are less and borrowers are many. Table 2: Average Daily Turnover in Call Money Markets
(Rs. Crore) Fortnight ended* Banks Borrowings Lendings 2 3 7,284 7,976 7,678 8,402 6,322 6,802 6,323 7,030 6,202 7,817 5,233 6,116 7,949 10,860 6,360 9,193 7,119 9,426 6,279 8,494 4,186 5,998 7,286 9,795 6,603 8,897 6,272 8,022 6,681 8,582 7,499 8,959 9,988 11,861 8,083 9,918 7,111 9,721 8,937 11,664 7,115 9,147 7,284 9,627 5,494 6,478 4,782 5,541 6,850 7,817 7,555 8,722 7,631 9,166 6,810 8,068 Average Daily Call Money Turnover Primary Dealers Non-Bank Institutions Borrowings Lendings Lendings 4 5 6 2,138 126 1,320 2,267 53 1,490 1,784 17 1,287 2,089 52 1,331 2,798 2 1,181 2,010 25 1,103 3,533 25 594 3,246 7 407 2,813 54 450 2,615 27 372 1,815 2 – 2,517 7 – 2,306 24 – 1,794 44 – 1,930 29 – 2,160 115 – 2,449 264 – 1,952 117 – 2,632 22 – 2,972 244 – 2,101 68 – 1,431 86 – 1,032 48 – 783 23 – 983 15 – 1,227 61 – 1,606 71 – 1,289 32 – Total 7 18,843 19,892 16,212 16,825 18,001 14,487 22,961 19,213 19,862 17,787 12,001 19,605 17,830 16,132 17,222 18,733 24,562 20,071 19,486 23,817 18,432 17,427 13,053 11,129 15,666 17,565 18,475 16,199

April April April May May June June July July August August September September September October October November November December December January January February February March March March April

1 1, 15, 29, 13, 27, 10, 24, 8, 22, 5, 19, 2, 16, 30, 14, 28, 11, 25, 9, 23, 6, 20, 3, 17, 3, 17, 31, 14,

2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2005 2006 2006 2006 2006 2006 2006 2006 2006

* : Effective fortnight ended September 5. 2003 data received from 92 Banks, 18 Primary Dealers and 53 Non-Bank Institutions. Effective fortnight ended February 20, 2004 data received from 89 Banks, 18 Primary Dealers and 53 Non-Bank institutions. Effective fortnight ended March 5, 2004 data received from 88 Banks, 18 Primary Dealers and 53 Non-Bank institutions. Effective fortnight ended June 25, 2004 data received from 88 Banks, 17 Primary Dealers and 53 Non-Bank institutions. Notes : 1. Data provisional 2. Since August 6, 2005 eligible participants are Banks and Primary Dealers.

Source: RBI, Bulletin, May, 2006. ROLE OF PRIMARY DEALERS IN THE CALL MARKET Primary Dealers have a significant role in the call market. Some commercial banks including co-operative and regional rural banks, which are not allowed to participate directly in the call market can access the market through Primary Dealers. The Primary Dealers offer a two-day quote, take spread and allow the banks to participate in the call money market. The call rates can be “spot rate” or the “weighted average rate”. As the Indian call market usually opens high and closes low, the average rate received by the lender will be normally lower than the middle rates. 254

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Recently, the working group constituted by the RBI to examine the necessity of prudential regulations on exposure to call/notice money market so as to preserve the integrity of the financial system has suggested the limits for transactions of Primary Dealers (PDs) in call/notice money market as also the roadmap for phasing them out from call/notice money market. The notification issued by the RBI “Access to Call/Notice Money Market for Primary Dealers: Prudential Norms” on July 31, 2002 states the prudential limits as following: With effect from October 5, 2002, PDs are permitted to lend in call/notice money market up to 25 percent of their Net Owned Funds (NOF). Access of PDs to borrow in call/notice money market would be gradually reduced in two stages: – In Stage I, PDs would be allowed to borrow up to 200 percent of their NOF as at March end of the preceding financial year. However, this limit would not be applicable to the days on which government dated securities are issued to the market. Stage I would be operational upon the finalization of uniform accounting and documentation procedures for repos, allowing rollover of repos, introduction of tripartite repos or Collateralized Borrowing and Lending Obligation (CBLO) to the satisfaction of the RBI and permitting repos out of Available For Sale (AFS) category. – In Stage II, PDs would be allowed to borrow up to 100 percent of their NOF. Days on which government dated securities are issued to the market will continue to be exempted from this limit. The implementation of Stage II will commence from one month after permitting sale of repoed securities. On implementation of the Real-Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) system, the above exemptions would be reviewed.

Volume of Activity in the Call Market
The volume of activity and the size of the call money market in India can be assessed by looking at the turnover of the market. Looking at the call market turnover it can be said that size appears to be very large considering the basic objective of the call market, which is to offset the momentary imbalances in the banking sector. The average daily turnover (borrowings) of the call markets as on the fortnight ended March 29, 1996 was Rs.9,465 crore Rs.18,941 crore during fortnight ended 15th October, 2004 and Rs.24,562 crore for the week ended November 11, 2005. The following reasons can be ascribed to the small size of the Indian call market compared to the American and UK markets. Table 3: Relative Shares in Call/Notice Money Market Percent Year 1 2000-01 2001-02 2002-03 2003-04 2004-05 2005-06 Borrowing Banks PDs 2 3 67 33 62 38 53 47 36 64 65 35 72 28 Banks 4 47 65 69 57 70 90 Lending PDs 5 12 10 2 2 1 0 Non-banks 6 41 25 29 41 29 10

Source: RBI Annual Report 2004-05. 255

Treasury Management: Theory and Practice

The volume of activity in the bill market is directly related to the call market activity. Because the bill market is small in India the size of call market borrowings to the bill market is also small. Secondly, the banks can approach the central bank as a lender of last resort and the availability of the direct discounting facilities with the RBI implies little need for borrowings from the markets. Also the large cash holdings of the Indian commercial banks show a lesser need for loan in a call market. Various regulations prevent the banks from advancing loans against shares. Hence, the sources for securities trading are mostly private. Therefore, advances to the security dealers are much less when compared with the US market.

Movement of Participants from Call to Repo Markets
The RBI has initiated the measures to make the call money market a pure interbank market including PDs by gradual elimination of non-bank participants from the call markets. This was announced by the RBI in “Mid-Term Review of Monetary and Credit Policy for 1998-99” announced in October, 1998. It was also proposed that measures would be taken simultaneously to ensure the development of repo market and enhance the participation of non-banking institutions in various other financial instruments. And consequently the non-bank participants were not allowed to participate in the call markets, through PDs, after June, 2001. Refer appendix for Report of the Technical Group on Phasing Out of Non-banks from Call/Notice Money Market (March 2002). The RBI proposed the following measures in the Monetary and Credit Policy 2005-06 in view of the recommendations of the Group: With effect from the fortnight beginning June 11, 2005, non-bank participants, except PDs, would be allowed to lend, on average in a reporting fortnight, up to 10 percent of their average daily lending in call/notice money market during 2000-01. With effect from August 6, 2005, non-bank participants, except PDs, would be completely phased out from the call/notice money market. With effect from the fortnight beginning April 30, 2005, the benchmark for fixing prudential limits on exposures to call/notice money market in the case of scheduled commercial banks would be linked to their capital funds (sum of Tier I and Tier II capital). From April 30, 2005, all NDS members are required to report their term money deals on NDS platform. A screen-based negotiated quote-driven system for all dealings in call/notice and term money market transactions is proposed. The RBI is strictly monitoring the limits prescribed for the non-bank participants. By any means if a non-bank participant could not divert its funds into other avenues of investment, the RBI can permit that institution to lend more than the limit for a certain period with appropriate limits. A review by the RBI found that phasing out of non-banks was going on smoothly without any strain on the market. There is a reduction in the volatility of call rates and an increase in the average daily turnover of the market. At the same time, the non-banking financial institutions and mutual funds have increased their net lending through the repo market. In the light of these improvements and the NDS and CCIL, the RBI has felt the need to accelerate the progress of phasing out so as to facilitate further deepening of the repo market. 256

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Efficient Call Money Market
An efficient call money market should be less volatile and provide an opportunity to its players to transact at comparatively stable rates of interest. In such a market, players (i.e., both lenders and borrowers) would resort to certain amount of self regulation bringing discipline into the market in their own interest. A call market being the nerve center of the financial system has its direct linkages with other money market segments and indirect linkages with credit, capital and forex markets should make it possible for the monetary authority to instantaneously identify areas where corrective actions are required and act upon without delay.

ROLE OF RESERVE BANK OF INDIA
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) functions as a market regulator and it does not lend or borrow funds in the call market, but it intervenes in the call market when the market is overheated. It adopts „Repos‟ and „Open Market Operations‟ to cool the heated market. Earlier, Intermediaries such as SBI-DFHI, STCI and Primary Dealers in the money markets played an active and vital role in maintaining the liquidity in primary as well as secondary markets in call money market. Later, the RBI adopted Liquidity Adjustment Facility (LAF) to maintain liquidity on day-today basis in call money market in a very flexible way.

Liquidity Adjustment Facility
Important signals for the interest rate changes and the prominent tools useful for the liquidity management in the Indian money market are the bank rates, CRR and repo rate changes. In this direction the Liquidity Adjustment Facility (LAF) by the RBI has been an effective mechanism in the RBI‟s liquidity management scheme where it can absorb or inject liquidity on a day-to-day basis in a very flexible way, which in turn provides a passage for the call money market.

The Scheme
The RBI in its monetary and credit policy of April, 2000 announced the introduction of the LAF (Liquidity Adjustment Facility). The Scheme of Liquidity Adjustment Facility (LAF) will include (i) Repo Auctions and (ii) Reverse Repo auctions. As per the scheme, Repo and Reverse Repo auctions will be conducted on a daily basis except for Saturdays. But for the intervening holidays and Fridays, the Repo tenor will be one day. On Fridays, the auctions will be held for three days maturity to cover the following Saturday and Sunday. The funds under LAF are expected to be used by the banks for their day-to-day mismatches in liquidity. As per the policy statement, the RBI has taken the launch of LAF in three convenient and progressive stages so as to ensure a smooth transition. In the first stage variable rate Repo auctions with the same day settlement were introduced replacing the Additional Collateralized Lending Facility (ACLF) to banks and Level II support to Primary Dealers (PDs). In the second stage of the scheme Collateralized Lending Facility (CLF) to banks and Level I support to PDs is to be replaced by variable rate Repo auctions. It was indicated that the effective date for the second stage would be decided in consultation with banks and PDs. As the market developed most of the constraints in the operations of the LAF were removed. Hence, the RBI is trying to make LAF much more efficient. On the basis of the previous LAF operations and also on long discussions with the market participants the RBI has revised the earlier LAF Scheme, dated October 24, 2005. and switchover to the international usage of the terms „repo‟ and „reverse repo‟. The RBI with effect from November 1, 2004 discontinued 7-day and 14-day reverse repo auction. The fixed reverse repo rate was raised to 5.75 percent in June 2006 and the fixed repo rate with a spread of 100 basis points over the fixed reverse repo rate, will stand at 6.75 percent. 257

Treasury Management: Theory and Practice

Fixed Rate Repo Auction
The RBI will henceforth have an additional option to switchover to fixed rate Repos on overnight basis; but this option is expected to be sparingly used. For the purpose of such Repos, the rates of interest intended to be offered would be announced as part of auction announcement on the previous evening or befo re 10 a.m. on the day of auction, if necessary. LONG-TERM REPO In addition to overnight Repos, the RBI will also have the discretion to introduce longer-term Repos up to 14-day period as and when required. RATE OF INTEREST At present, auctions under LAF are conducted on “uniform price” basis. It has been decided to introduce “multiple price” auction, in place of existing uniform price auction on an experimental basis for one-month period during May 2001. Interest rates in respect of both Repos and Reverse Repos will be, accordingly, based on the bids quoted by participants and subject to the cut-off rates as decided by the Reserve Bank of India, at Mumbai. The Repo/Reverse Repo rate in percent per annum expected by the tenderer will be expressed up to two decimal points rounded off to the nearest 5 basis points. As there will be no adjustment for accrued coupon, the cash flow will depend upon the Repo rate emerging on a day-to-day basis.

Dissemination of Information
For a smooth transition to full-fledged operation of LAF, banks and PDs are being provided a back-stop facility at variable rate of interest, as a cushion over the normal liquidity facility at Bank Rate. Along with the auction results, the rate of interest applicable to the back-stop facility for the concerned day will also be announced for the benefit of the participants who wish to avail of such facility. Further, to facilitate better bidding by the participants, additional information on the aggregate cash balances of scheduled commercial banks maintained with the RBI, during the fortnight, on a cumulative basis with a lag of two days as also weighted average cut-off yield will also be released as a part of the press release on money market operations.

Term Money Market
Term money market is the interbank market of more than 14 days maturity. This market is also affected by the reserve requirements of the banks. The RBI has taken two initiatives to develop the market. The All India Financial Institutions can take loans from the permitted lenders. The criteria of the banks and financial institutions, which participate in this market is such that there are no defaults in the market. The deposits are non-transferable and non-negotiable and the interest rate on the deposits is settled by the participants. These deposits improve the depth of the market and increase the scope of the banks to invest their short-term money in the market. The removal of reserve requirements on the interbank borrowings except a minimum CRR of 3% has enabled the banks to finance their requirements up to a period of 3 months. The Inter Bank Deposit rates are determined after comparison with other market rates and adjusted to the CRR factor. With these two initiatives the call market was stabilized as the fund requirements for more than 15 days are financed through the Inter Bank Deposits in this market.

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CALL MARKETS IN OTHER COUNTRIES
Two markets which form the call money market in the USA: (a) Federal funds market (b) Call money market.

Federal Funds Market
Federal funds are defined as money available for immediate payment. The principal source of immediately available money is the reserve balance. This is the balance which each bank maintains at the Federal Reserve Bank in its region of the United States. Hence, this market was termed as federal funds market. Funds are transferred from one bank to the other only through the Federal Reserve Bank. These funds are readily transferred into the appropriate reserve account immediately through the computer. The duration of a federal funds transaction is usually one day (overnight) and it is extended if necessary. PARTICIPANTS Savings and loan associations, credit unions, and savings banks maintain deposits with commercial banks or with the Federal Reserve banks, which are made available for immediate transfer to a customer or to another financial institution on need basis. Business corporations and state and local governments lend federal funds by executing repurchase agreements with securities dealers, banks and other funds traders. Borrowers of federal funds include securities dealers, corporations, state and local governments and non-bank financial intermediaries such as savings and loan associations and insurance companies. PURPOSE Banks and other depository institutions must hold liquid assets in a special reserve account, equal to a certain fraction of the funds with Federal Reserve Bank. Supply of federal funds arises because some member banks have reserves on a given day in excess of reserve requirement. Demand for funds arises as other member banks on the same day have reserve deficits, which are generally transferred from one depository institution to another when required. Apart from the commercial banks, the savings and loan associations, credit unions, savings banks, securities dealers and non-bank financial intermediaries borrow from this market. Though the fed funds are borrowed by many other users, this instrument is mainly used by commercial banks to maintain legal reserves with Federal Reserve Bank. OPERATIONAL MECHANISM The funds are transferred readily by telephone, online computer or by wire, from one account to the other after securities are purchased or whenever a loan is granted. Federal funds transactions take the following forms. If both institutions have Federal Reserve (lender and the borrower) bank accounts, they may instruct the Federal Reserve to transfer funds from the account of the lender to the account of the borrower over Fedwire, the wire-transfer system of the Federal Reserve. Either of the party may initiate the transaction. Alternatively, another institution (respondent) may maintain an account with an institution, which acts as a federal funds broker (correspondent). In such a case, the respondent bank informs the correspondent of its desire to sell federal funds, at which point the correspondent reclassifies the respondent‟s balance from demand deposits to federal funds purchased. The correspondent frequently resells the funds to a third party in the market. At times, if the transacting institutions/banks, both are not located within the same Federal Reserve district, then, the two Federal Reserve banks are involved in the transfer of funds. In such a case, loan transaction proceeds in much the same way except that two Federal Reserve banks are involved.

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INTEREST RATES ON FEDERAL FUNDS The federal funds interest rate is highly volatile every day; it tends to be most volatile towards the close of the reserve maintenance period, depending on whether larger banks are flush with or short of reserves. There are no seasonal patterns/fluctuations with which the funds rate tends to rise or fall. GOVERNMENT POLICY TOWARDS FEDERAL FUNDS MARKET This market is riskless and it is easy to invest excess reserves for short periods and still earn some interest income. It is basically a daily management of daily bank reserves, and credit can be obtained in a matter of minutes to cover emergency situations. Fed funds serve the principal means of payment for securities and loans, and the funds market transmits the effects of Federal Reserve Monetary Policy quickly throughout the banking system. CALL MONEY MARKET The call money market comprises an interbank call market, and the market between banks on the one hand and security brokers and dealers on the other hand. Call money in the US market performs a different function. The call loans represent short-term loans by banks to security brokers and dealers for the purpose of financing their customers‟ purchases of common stock. Bank loans to dealers in government securities also form part of the call loans. These loans are secured loans and the call provision allows the termination of the loan by either the lender or the borrower on one day‟s notice. Similarly, dealers in securities obtain loans from non-financial corporations, miscellaneous lenders such as state and local governments, foreign institutions, and insurance companies. This type of call money market does not exist elsewhere except in the US. This market forms a part of capital market rather than money market, as the money that is pooled here is lent to invest/purchase the common stock. Since the money does not roll into money markets, federal markets in international markets are known for high liquidity and returns. In the UK, the call money market consists of interbank loans, loans by the clearing banks to the discount house (given on call basis) and surplus/deficit positions between the clearing houses before approaching for final settlement with the Bank of England (central bank of the country). This market is more similar to the American market than to the Indian market.

SUMMARY
The call money market is the part of the money market where the surplus funds of the banks are traded on a daily basis. Borrowers use funds to match shortterm mismatches of assets and liabilities and to match the CRR requirements. This market is a measure of the liquidity of the overall money market. Maturity period varies from 1 to 14 days. Money that is lent for a day is called overnight money. All private sector, public sector and co-operative banks, term lending institutions, insurance companies and mutual funds participate in this market. Primary dealers, SBI-DFHI and STCI can participate only in the local call money markets. Interest paid on call loans is known as call rates and is calculated on a daily basis. Call money markets are located in the cities that have the major stock exchanges in India, namely, Mumbai, Kolkata, Delhi, Chennai and Ahmedabad. Mumbai has the largest market in India. The RBI acts as a regulator of the call money market, but neither borrows from nor lends to it. It uses repos and open market operations to control the market. An efficient call money market should be less volatile and provide an opportunity to the players to transact at comparatively stable rates of interest.

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Appendix
LAF - MECHANICS OF OPERATIONS i. The LAF auction timing is being advanced by 30 minutes. Bids will be received in tender forms at IDM Cell before 10.30 a.m., as against 11 a.m. at present. A separate box for the purpose will be kept at the reception on the Ground floor of the Central Office Building, the RBI, and Mumbai. Processing of the bids will be done at IDMC. The auction results will be displayed by the Mumbai Office by 12 noon as against 12.30 p.m. at present. ii. The Repo will be conducted as “Hold in Custody” type, wherein the Reserve Bank of India will act as a custodian for the participants and hold the securities on their behalf in the Repo/Reverse Repo Constituents‟ Accounts. In pursuant to this, the participants will have to give an undertaking as given in the respective tender forms authorizing the RBI to act on behalf of them. The Reserve Bank of India shall not, however be responsible for any loss, damage or liability on account of acting as the custodian on behalf of the participants. A Repo Constituents‟ SGL Account (RC SGL Account) and Reverse Repo Constituents‟ SGL Account (RRC SGL Account) will be opened and held in the Securities Department in Mumbai Office for this purpose which will have institution-wise subsidiary records of the securities sold under Repo and securities bought under Reverse Repo. The RBI will have Subsidiary Accounts in the case of both of these Accounts. Upon successful auctions in Repos, the tenderer‟s RC SGL Account will be credited with the required quantum of securities debiting the Bank‟s Subsidiary Account/Investment Account. Likewise, the tenderer‟s Current Account will be debited for the resultant cash flows and credited to the Bank‟s Account. The transaction will be reversed in the second leg. In the case of Reverse Repos, on acceptance of bid, the tenderer‟s SGL account/RRC SGL Account will be debited with the required quantum of securities and credited to Bank‟s Investment Account/Subsidiary RRC SGL Account. Accordingly, the tenderer‟s Current Account will be credited with the Reverse Repo amount, debiting the Bank‟s account. The transactions will be reversed in the second leg. Transactions between the RBI and the counterparties including operation of the RC SGL Account and RRC SGL Account would not require separate SGL forms as provision will be made in the application form for the purpose. Likewise, transfer of securities from/to the RBI‟s Investment Account and Subsidiary Accounts in the Repo and Reverse Repo SGL account will not require signing of SGL transfer forms. However, transfer from tenderer‟s SGL Account to the RRC SGL Account will require completion of SGL form. In the case of Reverse Repos, tenderers will have the option to either use the RRC SGL Account route or get their SGL Accounts debited for the purpose of transferring securities to the RBI. All securities including Treasury Bills will be priced at face value for Repo/Reverse Repo operations by the RBI. Accrued interest as on the date of transaction will be ignored for the purpose of pricing of securities. Coupon, if any, will be transferred to the RBI in the case of Repos, and the RBI will collect the coupon, if any, on the due date and credit the same to the party‟s Current Account in the case of Reverse Repos.

iii.

iv.

v.

vi.

Eligibility
All Scheduled Commercial Banks (excluding Regional Rural Banks) and Primary Dealers (PDs) having Current Account and SGL Account with the RBI, Mumbai will be eligible to participate in the Repo and Reverse Repo auctions.

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Minimum Bid Size To enable participation of small level operators in LAF and also to add further operational flexibility to the scheme, the minimum bid size for LAF is being reduced from the existing Rs.10 crore to Rs.5 crore and in multiples of Rs.5 crore thereafter. Eligible Securities Repos and Reverse Repos will be undertaken in all transferable Government of India dated Securities/Treasury Bills (except 14 days Treasury Bills). Margin Requirement A margin will be uniformly applied in respect of the above collateral securities comprising the Government of India dated securities/Treasury bills. The amount of securities offered or tendered on acceptance of a bid for Rs.100 will be Rs.105 in terms of face value. Settlement of Transactions The settlement of transactions in the auction will take place on the same day.

SLR and Securities Held in Repo SGL Account
Securities held by the RBI on behalf of banks‟ Repo Constituents‟ SGL account and credit balance in the RRC SGL Account will be counted for SLR purpose and a certificate will be issued to banks by the RBI on a fortnightly basis. As far as valuation etc., for SLR purpose is concerned, extant DBOD instructions will apply. Prudential Limit for Transactions in Call/Notice Money Market Sr. No. Participant 1. Scheduled Commercial Banks Borrowing On a fortnightly average basis, borrowing should not exceed 100 percent of capital funds (i.e., sum of Tier I and Tier II capital) of latest audited balance sheet. However, banks are allowed to borrow a maximum of 125 percent of their capital funds on any day, during a fortnight. Co-operative Banks Borrowings by State Cooperative Banks/District Central Co-operative Banks/Urban Coop. Banks in call/notice money market on a daily basis should not exceed 2 percent of their aggregate deposits as at end March of the previous financial year. Primary Dealers PDs are allowed to borrow, on average in a reporting fortnight, (PDs) up to 200 percent of their Net Owned Funds (NOF) as at endMarch of the previous financial year. Financial Institutions Insurance Companies Mutual Funds Not Permitted. Lending On a fortnightly average basis, lending should not exceed 25 percent of their capital funds; however, banks are allowed to lend a maximum of 50 percent of their capital funds on any day, during a fortnight.

2.

No Limit.

3.

PDs are allowed to lend in call/notice money market, on average in a reporting fortnight, up to 25 percent of their NOF.

Lending is permitted, on average in a reporting fortnight, upto 10 percent of their average daily 5. lending in call/notice market during 2000-01 and with effect 6. from August 6, 2005, non-bank participants except PDs would be completely phased out from the call/notice money market. Source: RBI/2005-06/14.Ref.MPO.No.269/07.01.279/2005-06. 01/07/2005. 262

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Report of the Technical Group on Phasing Out of Non-banks from Call/Notice Money Market (March 2002)
INTRODUCTION The call/notice money market is the most important segment in the Indian money market. In this market, while banks and Primary Dealers (PDs) are allowed to both borrow and lend, non-bank participants such as financial institutions, mutual funds and select corporates are permitted to only lend. Though non-bank participants holding current account and SGL account with the RBI are permitted to undertake both repo and reverse repo, the ease of transactions as well as low transaction costs arising from least documentation and same day settlement of funds in call/notice money market act as strong incentives for non-bank participants to prefer the latter to the former. This is impeding the development of a risk-free short-term yield curve and, hence, the pricing in other segments of the debt market. Therefore, a “basic restructuring of call money market” to make it a pure interbank market, as put forward by the Report of the Committee on Banking Sector Reforms (1998), was considered necessary. Towards this end, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has already initiated a number of steps to widen the repo market in terms of increasing the eligible securities and participants. While there is a consensus that complete withdrawal of non-bank participants from the call/notice money market (henceforth, only call money market for convenience) should be co-terminus with full fledged operationalization of the Clearing Corporation, it is felt that during the intermediate period, their operations should be phased out in such a manner that their migration to repo/reverse repo market becomes smooth and there is no disruption in the call money market. In order to accomplish this restructuring process, the mid-term review on Monetary and Credit Policy in October 2000 indicated that a Technical Group comprising officials from both banks and non-banks should be constituted in order to suggest ways for planned reduction in access by non-bank participants to call money market such that their transition to repo market become smooth. Following this, a Technical Group was constituted by Dr. Y V Reddy, Deputy Governor with appropriate representations from banks, non-banks and the RBI on December 9, 2000. The Report is organized in four Sections. While Section I discusses recommendations of the three committees with regard to participation of non-banks in call money market followed by international experiences in this regard, Section II analyzes the typical characteristics of Indian call money market. Section III delineates the circumstances in which the non-bank participants were allowed entry into the call money market during 1990s despite recommendations to the contrary by the Working Group on the Money Market (Chairman: N Vaghul) in 1987 as discussed in Section I. This Section also discusses the shift in stance of the RBI during the later part of 1990s and the efforts made by it to phase out non-bank participants from the call money market since then. Finally, Section IV presents policy perspectives and recommendations of the Technical Group. SECTION I Recommendations of Three Committees The issue of whether non-bank participants should constitute part of call/notice/term money market could be traced to the Report of the Committee to Review the Working of the Monetary System (Chairman: S Chakravarty) in 1985. Since then, the Report of the Working Group on the Money Market (Chairman: N Vaghul) in 1987 and the Report of the Committee on Banking Sector Reforms (Chairman: M Narasimham) in 1998 had also deliberated on this issue. It needs to be 263

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appreciated that the particular set of recommendations from these three Committees have to be assessed against the specific objectives for which these Committees had been constituted as well as the differing initial conditions reflecting the state of Indian financial market which were prevailing at that particular point of time. The Chakravarty Committee (1985) viewed this issue essentially from the angle of efficacy of monetary regulation by the Central Bank. It felt that allowing additional non-bank participants into the call market would not dilute the strength of monetary regulation by the RBI as resources from non-bank participants do not represent any additional resource for the system as a whole and their participation in call money market would only imply a redistribution of existing resources from one participant to another. Therefore, the monopoly power to affect the system‟s reserves continues to rest with the RBI. In view of this, the Chakravarty Committee recommended that additional non-bank participants may be allowed to participate in call money market. The Vaghul Committee (1987) on the other hand suggested that call money market should be purely an interbank market and therefore, the restrictions on entry into call market prevailing at that point of time should continue. The essential rationale for such recommendation was that freedom to enter into the call market coupled with allowing call money rates to be determined entirely by market forces at a time when deposit rates of banks were administered would lead to, substantial diversion of funds from the bank deposit segment to the call money market segment. This could markedly raise the cost of funds to banks. Therefore, while the Vaghul Committee decided in favor of making the call money market a pure interbank market, it felt that LIC and UTI which had been permitted to operate as lenders in the market would gradually come out of the market as other money market instruments developed with wider array of maturities. The Narasimham Committee II (1998) concurred with the Vaghul Committee that call/notice/term money market in India, like in most other developed markets, should be strictly restricted to banks. It, however, felt that exception should be made for Primary Dealers (PDs) who have been acting as market makers in the call money market and are formally treated as banks for the purpose of their inter-bank transactions and, therefore, they should remain as part of the call money market. With regard to non-banks, it expressed concern that these participants “are not subjected to reserve requirements and the market is characterized by chronic lenders and chronic borrowers and there are heavy gyrations in the market”. It felt that allowing non-bank participants in the call market “has not led to the development of a stable market with liquidity and depth … and the time has come to undertake a basic restructuring of call money market”. Like the Vaghul Committee, it had also suggested that the non-bank participants should be given full access to bill rediscounting, Commercial Paper (CP), Certificates of Deposit (CDs), Treasury Bills (TBs) and Money Market Mutual Funds (MMMFs) for deploying their short-term surpluses.

International Experiences
USA Federal funds market in USA is the counterpart of the call/notice money market in India. In this market, only those depository institutions that are required by the Monetary Control Act of 1980 to hold reserves with the Federal Reserve Banks are permitted to borrow. These include commercial banks, savings banks, savings and loan associations and credit unions. Non-bank participants such as corporates, state and local governments are prohibited from participating in the federal funds market directly. They supply funds to the overnight market through repurchase agreements (RPs) with their banks. Banks‟ borrowings from federal 264

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funds market as well as from RPs are free of reserve requirements. It is found that RP rates closely follow the federal funds rate with the former being lower than the latter as RP market is collateralized and, therefore, safer than the federal funds market and RP involves additional transaction costs in the form of documentation. It was found that as resources raised under RPs were free of reserve requirements, banks attempted to minimize their burden of reserve requirements by raising more resources through the RP avenue vis-á-vis deposits thereby reducing the volume of required reserves that banks had to hold with the Federal Reserve Banks. This in turn reduced the size of the Federal Reserve Banks‟ balance sheet and, therefore, reduced the interest payments that it could transfer to the US Government. In order to obviate this situation, the Federal Reserve Board passed a resolution in 1969 restricting the collateral to be used for RPs to only direct obligations of the US Government or its agencies. This somewhat offset the revenues that are likely to be lost due to reduced volume of reserves held by banks. France Initially, some non-bank entities were allowed in the money market which were able to obtain a market rate of return on their investments. These non-bank entities included insurance companies, pension funds, stock brokers‟ boards, etc. In order to encourage the spread of negotiable securities among the public as well as to restrict the access to the market (for “central bank money”) the authorities favored the creation of a pure interbank money market accessible only to credit institutions. The non-bank entities who are no longer part of the interbank money market have moved to the repo market as well as sales of negotiable securities as part of their short-term liquidity management. The authorities felt that this sort of restructuring of the market should help in fostering development of short-term securities in the economy. Among emerging economies also, overnight money markets in countries like Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand have only banks as participants. SECTION II Characteristics of the Indian Call Money Market As indicated above, call money is the most important segment of the Indian financial system. It consists of overnight money and money at short notice for a period of up to 14 days. The call money market essentially serves the purpose of equilibrating the short-term liquidity position of banks and other participants. It is also the focal point through which the RBI attempts to influence the short-term interest rates. Its average daily turnover at more than Rs.40,000 crore in recent period is the highest among all money market instruments including Government securities market. In this market, while banks and Primary Dealers (PDs) are allowed to both borrow and lend, non-bank participants such as financial institutions, mutual funds and select corporates are permitted to only lend. The demand for funds in this market is mainly governed by the banks‟ need for resources to meet their statutory reserve requirement; it also offers some participants a regular funding source to build-up short-term assets. It is, however, felt that the demand for funds for reserve requirements dominates any other demand in the market. Viewed from this angle, it may be noted that total reserves transacted (i.e., aggregate borrowings) in the call money market as proportion of aggregate cash balances maintained by commercial banks with the RBI, on average, ruled around 32 percent in the recent period. As regards the number of participants, apparently the market is very broad based as on the borrowing side, there are as many as 169 participants (banks – 154 and PDs – 15) while on the lending side, apart from these 169 participants, there are additional 105 participants taking the total to 274 (Table A1).

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Table A1 Number of Participants in Call/Notice Money Market (as on March 12, 2001) Category I. II. Borrower Lender Bank 154 154 PD 15 15 FI – 20 MF – 35 Corporate – 50 Total 169 274

A typical characteristic of this market is that except PDs who are participating in both sides of the market, there is hardly any bank that operates both as a borrower and lender simultaneously on any given day. It is generally found that public sector banks with their vast branch network in the country are generally the supplier of funds in the market while foreign and private sector banks with their urban-centric structure coupled with their relatively advanced treasury operations are regular borrowers in the market. Keeping this in perspective, the overall shares of various constituents based on their daily transactions during the last two years are as follows: Table A2 Market Shares of Constituents in Call/Notice Money Market (in Percent) Borrowings Year 1999 2000 Note: a. b. Banks 68 66 PDs 32 34 Lendings Banks 52 45 PDs 11 11 Others 37 44

Figures do not include operations of co-operative banks. “Others” constitute financial institutions, mutual funds and select corporates.

An analysis of participant-wise shares in both borrowings and lendings in call/notice money market reveals a highly skewed nature of the market. On the lending side, State Bank of India (SBI) is the largest participant accounting for as much as 15 percent in 1999 which, however, declined to 13 percent in the following year (Table A3). On the whole, four public sector banks and five Financial Institutions (FIs) supplied to the tune of 38 percent of the aggregate supplies of funds in the market in 1999 which dropped to 31 percent in 2000. What is important to note here is that though there are as many as 274 participants (Table A1) who are eligible to lend in the market, there are only 9 participants as indicated above who control about one-third of aggregate lendings in the market. Table A3 Shares of Select Participants in Call/Notice Money Market : Lending (in Percent) Year Banks FIs 1999 20 (15) 18 2000 17 (13) 14 Source: Banks: Canara Bank, Central Bank, PNB and SBI. FIs : ICICI, IDBI, LIC, SIDBI and UTI. Parenthetic figures relate to those of the SBI. Similarly, on the borrowing side, the shares of only ten foreign and private sector banks accounted for as much as 36 percent of aggregate borrowings in 1999 which increased further to 39 percent in the following year (Table A4). 266 Total 38 31

Financial Markets and Instruments

Table A4 Shares of Select Banks in Call/Notice Money Market: Borrowings Year 1999 2000 (in percent) Banks 36 39

Select banks include ABN-AMRO Bank, Bank Nationale De Paris, Centurion Bank, Citi Bank, Deutsche Bank, Grindlays Bank, HDFC Bank, Hongkong Bank, IDBI Bank and Standard Chartered Bank. From this analysis, it needs to be noted that though apparently the market is quite broad based, in reality, it is quite lopsided in both borrowing and lending segments. In other words, despite the market having the highest turnover in Indian money market, it lacks depth and liquidity as absence of one or two major participants in either of the segments may have the potential to cause sharp volatility in the market. This not only impairs efficient price discovery process in the market, but also necessitates more active liquidity management practices by the RBI in order to keep interest rates within a reasonable corridor. SECTION III Position since 1990s Following the freeing of interest rates in call money market in June 1989, there had been bouts of extreme volatility in call rates on many occasions during 1989-90. Despite the Vaghul Committee recommendation that call money market should be made purely an interbank market, with a view to reduce volatility and widen the market, the policy relating to the entry into the call/notice money market was gradually liberalized since 1990. In May 1990, three more financial institutions (viz., GIC, IDBI and NABARD) besides LIC and UTI were permitted to participate in the call/notice money market as lenders. In October 1990, with a view to further widen the call/notice money market and to bring about a greater integration in various segments of the money market, all the participants in the Bills Rediscounting Scheme who were not operating in the call/notice money market till then, were granted entry as lenders. Subsequently, eight mutual funds sponsored by public sector banks/financial institutions were also permitted to participate in the call/notice money market as lenders. In April 1991, the policy relating to entry in the call/notice money market was further liberalized and it was decided to provide access as lenders to such entities as were able to provide evidence to the RBI of bulk lendable resources. Such entities were required to observe a minimum size of operations of Rs.20 crore per transaction and such transactions were to be routed through SBI-DFHI only. Furthermore, such entities were also required to give an undertaking that they had no outstanding borrowings from the banking system. In April 1997, the facility of routing transactions by these entities was extended to all the PDs as against only SBI-DFHI earlier. The minimum size of operations was also reduced from Rs.20 crore to Rs.10 crore and ultimately to Rs.5 crore and finally to Rs.3 crore in October 1997 and in May 1998 respectively. Consequent upon the relaxations granted to entities for routing call transactions, the number of entities routing their call transactions through PDs rose sharply. At present, there are 50 such entities. Earlier only the public sector mutual funds were allowed to operate as lenders in the call/notice money market but with a view to facilitate a level playing field, it was decided in April 1995 to provide access to mutual funds set-up in the private sector and approved by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) also as lenders in the call/notice money market after these entities obtained specific permission from the Reserve Bank. In 1996, 4 primary dealers, in addition to SBIDFHI and STCI were permitted to operate both as lenders as well as borrowers in the call/notice money market. As of now, the number of PDs has increased to 15. 267

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As on July 01, 2005, there were 9 financial institutions, 9 insurance companies and 31 mutual funds are operating in the market as lenders, besides all scheduled commercial banks, co-operative banks and primary dealers which operate as both lenders as well as borrowers. Shift in Stance in the RBI There has been a change in policy stance regarding permission to non-bank participants to operate in the call/notice money market. This issue was also examined by the “Internal Group to Examine the Development of Call Money Market” in 1997 which had observed that the call money market was an interbank market the world over. Furthermore, when non-banks are allowed to participate in the call money market, it partly distorts the signals of liquidity conditions in the system. Analysis done by the group revealed that intermediate lenders in call money were in a position to exploit the situation of tight money conditions and dictate terms to the banking system thereby causing undue volatility in the call/notice money market. The view was that non-bank institutions should instead be allowed to deploy their short-term funds in alternative money market instruments like Repos, Money Market Mutual Funds (MMMFs) and Certificates of Deposit (CDs), etc., and until these markets develop, the existing non-bank participants may be allowed to continue in the call money market. Similarly, following the recommendations of the Narasimham Committee II (1998), the general consensus of members of the Standing Committee on Money Market (which was since reconstituted as Technical Advisory Committee on Money and Government Securities Markets) was that ultimately we should move towards a pure interbank market along with only primary dealers, and in the meantime steps should be taken to widen the repo market and increase non-bank participation in other money market instruments. Accordingly, in the “Mid-Term Review of Monetary and Credit Policy for 1998-99” announced in October 1998, the Reserve Bank indicated its intention to ultimately move towards a pure inter-bank call/notice/term money market including PDs. It was indicated that measures would be taken simultaneously to widen the repo market and improve non-bank participation in a variety of other instruments and this would be implemented in a manner that existing lenders in the market would have operational flexibility to adjust their asset-liability structures. It was decided, as a first step, that permission only to non-bank participants for routing their call transactions through PDs be withdrawn and other non-bank institutions (financial institutions and mutual funds) be allowed to continue in the call/notice money market until such time the other avenues for short-term deployment of funds are available. Accordingly, in April 1999, it was indicated that permission given to non-bank entities to lend in the call/notice money market by routing their transactions through PDs would be available only up to end-December 1999. This permission was, however, extended in stages up to June 2001. Simultaneously, the Reserve Bank has taken several steps to widen the participation in repo market as indicated below: i. Following the amendment to the Securities Contract (Regulations) Act, 1956 (SCRA) in March, 2000 delegating regulatory powers to the RBI to regulate, inter alia, dealings in Government securities and money market securities, all those non-bank entities maintaining current account and SGL account with the RBI, Mumbai had been permitted to undertake both repo and reverse repo. Minimum maturity for repo transactions was reduced to 1 day.

ii.

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iii. iv. v.

State Government securities have been made eligible for undertaking repos. The RBI also opens its purchase window to impart liquidity to Treasury Bills whenever the situation warrants. Clearing Corporation is being set-up for money and securities settlement.

In addition to the above, the minimum period for transferability in case of Certificates of Deposit has recently been abolished. This would provide an additional avenue to non-banks to lend short-term funds to the banking system. SECTION IV Policy Perspective and Recommendations The Technical Group appreciated the need for non-banks to be phased out of the call/notice money market in the interest of development of a risk-free short-term yield curve in the economy. Towards this end, the Group concurred fully with the view expressed by Dr. Y V Reddy, Deputy Governor of the RBI that complete withdrawal of non-banks from call money market should be co-terminus with the full fledged operationalization of the Clearing Corporation. Keeping this in perspective, the Group deliberated on various suggestions in order to achieve a smooth transition to the repo/reverse repo market. These suggestions broadly relate to call money market and Government securities market including repo market. Call Money Market With regard to gradual phasing out of access to call money market by such non-bank participants as financial institutions and mutual funds, the Group recommends that such access may be reduced in three stages by placing cap in relation to their average daily lendings during April 2000 – March 2001. In the first stage, each such non-bank participant should be allowed to lend only up to 70 percent of their average daily lendings in call money market during 2000-2001 for a period of three months which should come into effect at the earliest after March 31, 2001. In the second stage, access should be reduced further to 40 percent of their average daily lendings during 2000-01. The final stage should commence with the setting up of Clearing Corporation or after a period of three months from the conclusion of the second stage whichever is later. The final stage by which time the Clearing Corporation is expected to be established should last for a period of three months. During this phase, the Group feels that access to call money market should be permitted to these participants to the extent of 10 percent of their average daily lending during 2000-01. This is considered necessary to enable these particular classes of non-bank participants to be familiar with the operations of the Clearing Corporations. After the end of this stage, these entities would not be permitted to lend in call money market at all. The Group appreciates that there is a strong need to gradualize the process of phasing out non-banks from the call money market for ensuring their smooth transition to the repo market as has been indicated above. However, there is a consensus that among the non-bank participants, select corporates who route their funds through PDs may be withdrawn immediately as these entities could always place their funds with PDs through the Inter-corporate Deposits (ICDs) route. Accordingly, the Group recommends that corporates lending in call money market should not be permitted to lend after end-June 2001. Government Securities/Repo Market With the phasing out of non-bank participants from call money market to repo/reverse repo market, it is expected that the latter would emerge as a vibrant 269

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short-term money market for both banks and non-banks. In fact, it is envisaged that in future, both call money market and repo/reverse repo market would constitute a unified market to equilibrate short-term funds positions for both banks and non-bank participants because repo/reverse repo (henceforth, it is indicated as repo market for convenience unless otherwise stated) market would afford both borrowing and lending facility to non-bank participants. However, during the intermediate period, it is apprehended that funds flow between these two markets may not be as smooth as one expects it to be eventually. This is because distribution of surplus liquidity and that of surplus securities over Statutory Liquidity Requirements (SLR) in the banking sector are such that those who are persistent borrowers in the market (i.e., foreign and private sector banks) do not maintain sufficiently large volume of surplus securities in their portfolio (Table 5) so as to enable them to borrow easily from the repo market. Table A5 Distribution of Excess SLR Securities among Categories of Banks (Rupees in crore) Group of Bank Average Holding of Excess SLR Securities 1999 1. 2. 3. 4. SBI Group Nationalized Banks other than SBI Group Private Sector Banks Foreign Banks Total 6,054 4,219 77,952 8,749 4,819 95,726 7.8 5.4 100 9.1 5.0 100 28,324 39,355 2000 35,703 46,455 Percentage Share in Total 1999 36.4 50.6 2000 37.3 48.5

Note: For this purpose, required SLR investments have been worked out as 25 percent of “Liability to Others” for the category of banks concerned. Excess SLR securities have been defined as “Investments in Government and other Approved Securities” less required SLR investments. It may be worthwhile to note that while the average daily aggregate lending in call money market by non-bank participants stood at Rs.7,672 crore during the years 1999 and 2000, average net borrowings by banks and PDs were Rs.3,488 crore and Rs.4,184 crore, respectively, during the period. As against this, the average surplus securities available with the foreign and private sector banks were at Rs.11,920 crore of which the average volume of surplus securities with foreign banks was at Rs.4,519 crore during the period. Moreover, a part of securities held by PDs would also be available for undertaking repo transactions. Again, since these classes of entities are also more active in trading in Government securities market, the effective volume of surplus securities available for repo for borrowing of funds would be lower for them. While the Group is aware that chronic borrowers should need to reduce their call money borrowing keeping in view the Asset-Liability Management (ALM) guidelines, it is generally perceived that these borrowers could face some transition problems. However, considering the fact that non-bank participants such as financial institutions and mutual funds would be permitted to lend up to 70 percent of their average daily lending during 2000-2001 for three months in the first phase, it is expected that market participants on both lending and borrowing sides would have sufficient time to adjust their portfolios accordingly without any disruption in the market. Moreover, with the 270

Financial Markets and Instruments

establishment of Clearing Corporation, repo operations would not only become more efficient and the need for securities would be relatively less, it would also be possible to undertake repo transactions in non-Government securities. Non-bank participants under the new set-up may also like to build-up a portfolio of repoable securities for meeting their occasional short-term borrowing needs over time. This may represent an additional demand in the debt market including Government securities. Eventually, it is envisaged that since call money rates would be higher than the repo rates, banks with surplus SLR securities may act as conduits for funds from the repo market to call market. Under the ambit of the Clearing Corporation, rollover of securities in repo transactions would also become possible (provided it is not considered a short sale). Similarly, the Group feels that securities obtained under reverse repo may be allowed to be used for undertaking repo. These apart, at present repo is permitted only at Mumbai. Such activities may be allowed in other centers as well. The Group feels that since repo market will attract larger volume of transactions in the wake of phasing out of non-bank participants from the call money market, there is a strong need to introduce a master repo agreement with uniform documentation and accounting standards. The Group, however, appreciates that such an effort is underway under the aegis of the Fixed Income Money Market and Derivatives Association of India (FIMMDA). Though non-bank participants are allowed to invest in all other money market instruments with a much wider array of maturities, the Group has suggested that floating stock of Treasury Bills particularly at the shorter end may be increased for providing an additional avenue to non-bank participants for deploying their short-term surplus funds.

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