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External benchmark for floating rate loans from October 1

The Reserve Bank of India has been long examining the feasibility of mandating the use of external benchmark for determining interest rate on floating rate loans.

External benchmark for floating rate loans from October 1

New Delhi: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has issued a circular making it mandatory for banks to link all new floating rate personal or retail loans and floating rate loans to MSMEs to an external benchmark effective October 1, 2019.

“The banks are free to choose one of the several benchmarks indicated in the circular. The banks are also free to choose their spread over the benchmark rate, subject to the condition that the credit risk premium may undergo change only when borrower’s credit assessment undergoes a substantial change, as agreed upon in the loan contract,” RBI said.

The Reserve Bank of India has been examining the feasibility of mandating the use of external benchmark for determining interest rate on floating rate loans.

In August 2017 the RBI constituted an Internal Study Group (ISG) to examine the working of the Marginal Cost of Fund Based Lending Rate (MCLR) system that was put in place in April 2016.