Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) have made a comeback to the Indian debt market in November after reporting outflows of $7.7 billion in the current year.
The recent developments have been attributed to strengthening currency, fall in crude prices and measures taken by the central bank to improve liquidity in the market.
So far in November, FPIs have bought $721.5 million in debt, the highest monthly purchase since January. Still, FPIs have remained net sellers in current year by offloading $7.76 billion in domestic bonds. Whereas, FPIs have continued to sell in the equity markets, the last two weeks have reported an outflow of more than $1 billion in the equity market.
Experts at Kotak Institutional Equities believe the recent softness in crude oil prices and minor progress in China-US trade issues have helped improve investment sentiment for the Indian market. However, India still has to contend with oil prices (the Iran-US sanctions issue is far from settled) and three important state elections with fairly open outcomes.
Brent crude benchmark has lost 19% in the past one month after recording a four-year high of $86 a barrel in October. Plus, rupee has also seen a comeback after closing at 72.49 against the greenback on Friday, down more than 2% from the October 31 closing of 74.09. The strengthening of currency and a drop in crude oil prices have reduced the concerns of high inflation and a widening current account deficit.
Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has also announced another series of open market operations (OMOs) worth `40,000 crore to continue the liquidity support to the market. In October, RBI announced Rs 36,000 crore of OMO purchases and met its target in three auctions throughout the month.
The yield on the benchmark bond on Friday closed at 7.76%, down 35 basis points from the four-year high of 8.11% on October 4. Experts believe the flat yield curve, fall in oil prices and attractive rates have heavily contributed to inflow of foreign investors to the debt market but volatility in the near future can also be expected.
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Source: Financial Express