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Now RBI Confirms Closure of Banks on 2nd and 4th Saturdays  -  RBI issues New Guidelines for "WORKING" Saturdays

 

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by

Rajesh Goyal 

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In a Press Release dated 28th August, RBI has given the details of the new guidelines that will be in placed from 1st September 2015, from which date the holidays for 2nd and 4th Saturdays will be made effective.

 

We give below the details of the press release wherein RBI has given the details of the new guidelines:-

 

Contents of the Circular

Remarks, if any

All scheduled and non-scheduled banks public, private, foreign, cooperative, regional rural and local area banks will observe public holiday on second and fourth Saturdays from September 01, 2015; and will observe full working days on Saturdays other than second and fourth Saturdays (referred to as working Saturdays in the Press Release). Consequent to this, the Reserve Bank of India has announced the following changes in its functioning with effect from September 1, 2015:

Saturdays other than second and fourth will be referred as "Working Saturdays"

.  Financial Market Segments

                (a) The financial market segments which are currently open for transactions on  Saturdays will continue to remain open on all working Saturdays. That is, 

                (i) All money market segments, namely, call/notice/term money, market repo and Collateralised Borrowing and Lending Obligation (CBLO) will remain open on all working Saturdays as on any normal business day; and

                (ii) Forex market and Government securities markets, along with all OTC derivative markets would remain closed on all Saturdays, as hitherto.

                (b) The Reserve Bank will continue to operate fixed rate reverse repo as well as  the marginal standing facility (MSF) windows on all working Saturdays  between 7:00 pm and 7.30 pm as on any normal business day. 

                (c) The Reserve Bank will also operate a fixed rate liquidity adjustment facility  (LAF) repo window on all working Saturdays between 9.30 am and 10.30 am.  The LAF repo window on working Saturdays would in fact be an extension of  the Friday LAF window. That is, banks could borrow for three days on Friday,  within the prescribed limits, and any residual unused limit could be utilised for  a 2-day period on working Saturdays.

 

Non Change for FEX business as they were also closed on Saturdays

 

Adjustments made by RBI to various markets to remain in tune with the now non working Saturdays.

II. Payment Systems

                (i) Payment systems will not be operated on second and fourth Saturdays but would operate for full day on working Saturdays. Payment systems typically includes Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS), National Electronic Fund Transfer (NEFT), Cheque Clearing operated by various Bankers' Clearing Houses in the country including the grid based Cheque Truncation System (CTS) and ECS suite [Electronic Clearing Service (ECS), Regional Electronic Clearing Service (RECS) and National Electronic Clearing Service (NECS)].

                 (ii) Processing of future value dated transactions with value date falling on second  and fourth Saturdays will not be undertaken under RTGS and ECS suite.

 

 

III.  Banking Department 

The Banking Departments in Regional Offices of the Reserve Bank will remain open for the full day on working Saturdays as required to support the functioning of the Financial Markets and the Payment Systems. Government business will be transacted at agency banks on working Saturdays.

It may be recalled that the Government of India issued a Notification on August 20, 2015 [published in the Gazette of India, Extra Ordinary, Part II, Section 3, Sub-Section (ii)] declaring every second and the fourth Saturday of every month as public holiday under Section 25 of the  Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881 (26 of 1881).  Accordingly, all banks whether or not  included in the Second Schedule to the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 (2 of 1934) will observe holidays on second and fourth Saturdays with effect from September 1, 2015.  As a regulator of banks, financial markets and payment and settlement systems, the Reserve Bank has made supporting changes in the working of some of its operational areas. 

The above arrangements would be reviewed after six months. 

 

The above arrangements would be reviewed after six months. 

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Thus, now Bankers can heave a sigh of relief that what was a part of the 10th BPS agreement has finally been implemented although they had to sacrifice a lot in terms of lower increase in wages.    The worst affected has been the bankers who have been retired after 1st November, 2012, whose pension has been reduced and they have not been not to avail of any Saturday holidays.   Anyway, good luck to the serving bankers and hope they will not succumb to the pressures of top management who may call the bankers to complete the pending work or garner fresh business for the banking / following up of the NPAs etc.   If this becomes a practice in next few months, then it will be a greater loss to the banking community.  Union leaders need to support the bankers and ensure that on NonWorking  Saturdays all branches and administrative offices actually remain closed.

 

Source : RBI press release

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