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RBI Raises Bulk Fixed Deposit Limit to Rs 3 Crore from Rs 2 Crore

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has announced a revision in the threshold for bulk fixed deposits, increasing the limit from Rs 2 crore to Rs 3 crore. This adjustment reflects the RBI’s strategy to refine liquidity management and align deposit classifications with current economic needs.

Bulk Fixed Deposits and Interest Rates

Bulk fixed deposits, which now start at Rs 3 crore, typically offer higher interest rates compared to retail term deposits. This differentiation helps banks in their liquidity management practices. Retail fixed deposits are now defined as single rupee term deposits up to Rs 2 crore with Scheduled Commercial Banks (excluding Regional Rural Banks) and Small Finance Banks.

Revised Definitions for Bulk Deposits

According to RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das, bulk deposits for Scheduled Commercial Banks (excluding RRBs) and Small Finance Banks will now be termed as single rupee term deposits of Rs 3 crore and above. For Local Area Banks, the threshold is set at Rs 1 crore, aligning it with the definition for Regional Rural Banks.

Ease of Doing Business and FEMA Guidelines

In a move to streamline international trade processes, the RBI plans to rationalise the guidelines under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) of 1999 for the export and import of goods and services. This initiative aims to enhance operational flexibility for authorized dealer banks and promote ease of doing business. Draft guidelines will be released shortly for stakeholder feedback.

Enhancing Digital Payments Security

Addressing the rise in digital payment frauds, the RBI proposes the establishment of a Digital Payments Intelligence Platform. This platform is designed for network-level intelligence and real-time data sharing across the digital payments ecosystem to bolster security and consumer confidence. A committee has been formed to explore the establishment of this platform.

Promoting Fintech Innovation

The RBI continues to foster innovation in the fintech sector through initiatives like the global hackathon ‘HaRBInger – Innovation for Transformation’. The upcoming third edition, ‘HaRBInger 2024’, will focus on themes such as ‘Zero Financial Frauds’ and ‘Being Divyang Friendly’, following the successful completion of the first two editions in 2022 and 2023.

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