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Indian stocks are at record highs, foreign exchange reserves are at levels unseen in history at seventh largest in the world, bonds are sought after on improved focus on macro stability.
“Anecdotal trends suggest that there is not necessarily a strong linkage between rating action and flows, in absence of material and ongoing improvement on the ground,” says Radhika Rao, economist at DBS, Singapore.
DAYS AHEAD India’s credit rating after Friday’s upgrade is the highest by Moody’s since it was downgraded from A2 to Baa1 in October 1990.
As growth picked up, other macroeconomic parameters have also improved.
The investor behaviour raised questions on whether the government’s wrangling with rating companies for an upgrade all these years was actually worth it?
Celebration in the political circles may be a reflection of international recognition for the work the government did for three years, but to investors who really matter, it was clear even before.
Current account deficit, the excess of imports over exports, has been reined in at 2.4% of the gross domestic product, from a peak of 4.8% in 2013.
“India has been recognised as a medium-term positive story for some time by investors,” says Sonal Varma, economist at Nomura Securities.
The Global Financial Crisis of 2008 led to their reputation tarnished as the rating companies were accused of colluding with investment banks to puff up rating of potentially junk securities.
Moody’s Investors Service’s upgrade of sovereign ratings was a stamp of approval for the macroeconomic fundamentals of the nation that was to make borrowing less expensive for the state. The yield on the benchmark government bonds fell 12 basis points, or as low as 6.94%, in a matter of minutes after trading began last Friday.
But even before the ink was dry, it climbed back to end at 7.05%.
So, what does it mean for the Indian markets in the next few years?
While flows may have found their way guided by independent research, there are certain benefits.