RBI reduces debt trading hours and currency markets from April 7

MUMBAI: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has reduced debt trading hours as well as the currency markets as of Tuesday in light of the crash following the coronavirus outbreak.

The revised market times will take effect from April 7 to 17, 2020, the central bank said in a circular on Friday.

The market will open at 10 a.m. instead of 9 a.m. Current and closing times have also been revised at 2 p.m. for all segments. The blockade has negatively impacted the functioning of financial markets, the RBI said.

Market times have been revised to minimize these risks and to ensure that market participants maintain adequate controls and supervisory controls while optimizing scarce resources and ensuring personnel safety, he said.

According to the circular, the government stock market calendar (central government securities, state development loans and treasury bills) has been revised from 10 a.m. at 2 p.m. from 9 a.m. At 5 pm.

Foreign currency (FCY)/Indian rupee (INR) trading, including the foreign exchange derivatives market as well as the rupee interest rate derivatives market have also been changed from 10 a.m. at 2 p.m. from 9 a.m. At 5 pm.

The RBI said the unprecedented situation created by the COVID-19 outbreak has required blockades, social distancing, restrictions on the movement of people and nonessential activities, work-from-home arrangements, and business continuity plans.

The resulting dislocations have negatively impacted the functioning of financial markets. IT staff and resources have been severely affected, posing operational and logistical risks.

The decline in activity is affecting market liquidity and increasing volatility in financial prices, the circular said.

However, all regular banking services for clients, including RTGS, NEFT, e-kuber and other retail payment systems will continue to be available at existing schedules, the RBI added.