Mumbai: Though interest rates have peaked, a hike in Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) by the Reserve Bank cannot be ruled out in the first quarterly review of monetary policy later this month, a top official of a foreign bank said on 2 July.
“Inflation concerns have been mitigated and we are at peak with interest rates. However, the desire to mop up liquidity remains and a CRR hike cannot be ruled out,” ABN Amro Country Executive (India) Romesh Sobti told reporters.
Inflation stood at its 14-month low of 4.03% for the week ended 16 June, down from 4.28% during the previous week. RBI targets to control inflation below 5% this year and 4-4.5% in the medium term.
ABN Amro also announced its results for 2006-07. The net profit of the bank for the fiscal was up from 59.44% to Rs 385.35 crore with robust growth in deposits.
The growth has been due to the right balance of strong growth, capital utilization and offering customer value, Sobti said.
The deposits rose by 34.85% to Rs 15,998.30 crore while the advances increased by 21.99 per cent to Rs 18,387.55 crore.
“The key is liquidity and thus our robust growth in deposits. However, the deposit rates have peaked and we expect a downturn,” he added.
On slow retail growth, Sobti said the bank has become more selective to maintain credit quality.
“We have to balance the EMIs to income capacity of people so that there are no delinquency. We are safeguarding our books,” he said.