Lending rates to rise for ICICI Bank
By Neelima Shankar
Apr 2, 2010
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Credit off take is going to pick up from July which would be putting pressure on lending rates, said the second largest lender of the country, ICICI Bank.

"From the second quarter of this financial year you will see a very healthy offtake of credit which means that situation of very comfortable liquidity that we are living in today may not be there," ICICI Bank Managing Director and CEO Chanda Kochhar.

The supply of money in the economy will be very tightly regulated as an inflation controlling measure. As a result of this the interest rates are going to rise in the second half of the financial year. That cannot be ruled out at all, Ms. Kochhar said.

The bank had increased deposit rates by 50 basis points across selected maturities in February. Deposit rates have also been raised by other banks like HDFC Bank, Indian Overseas Bank, IDBI Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank in the last two months.

Kochhar assured that the increase in lending rates will take place in a smooth manner without hurting the customer through sharp and large means.

"So, a gradual smooth increase in interest rate in the second half of the year but something that will be absorbed by the economy and will not really create a lot of pain to growth rate that we are witnessing," she said.

Speaking out her views about the upcoming monetary policy she said, "my feeling is that since the CRR (Cash Reserve Ratio) is already been increased by 75 basis points, we are now looking at a scenario where there is a possibility of increase in credit off take, may be not much will be done on the CRR side and something can be expected actually to be done on the interest rate side."


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