Mumbai: Banks are yet to start disbursing money in a big way for high-speed 3G spectrum licence fees, but its effect has started showing in the surplus funds they keep with the central bank every day.
On Monday, banks parked only Rs4,540 crore of their excess funds with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), compared with Rs47,530 crore on Friday and an average of Rs52,197 crore this fiscal.
According to bankers, this is to an extent linked to a small start in disbursal towards 3G license fees.
Banks have to maintain 6% of their deposits with RBI by the end of every fortnight.
Fearing a liquidity crunch at the end of the fortnight owing to the 3G outgo, banks have started filling their cash reserve requirements accounts from the start of the fortnight, the treasury head of a private bank said on condition of anonymity. They would otherwise have to come to the expensive call money market to access funds to meet cash reserve requirements at the end of the fortnight after disbursing for 3G fees, he said.
Bankers say the lenders’ share of Rs70,000 crore in 3G licence fees will be Rs35,000-45,000 crore.
The tight liquidity scenario also shot up the overnight call money rate to an intraday high of 4.25% from Friday’s close of 3.75%. It ended the day at 3.90%.