Market mayhem: Govt, RBI keenly monitoring situation, says Jaitley

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New Delhi, Aug 24: Seeking to calm jittery investors after bloodbath on markets, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today vowed to push ahead with reforms agenda and increase public spending as part of drive to strengthen economy.

Modi, who reviewed the crash on stock markets and plunge of rupee with Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and other top officials, underlined that the economy was stable and problem was external and not internal.

Sensex: 'Govt monitoring situation'

Briefing reporters on the review by Modi, Jaitley said the government as well as the regulators Reserve Bank and Sebi were keenly watching global developments but there was no need for bailout package as of now.

Modi was of the opinion that "our economy is stable" but more needed to be done, Jaitley said, adding, "we will keep watching the situation and respond when required."

The review of the economy at the highest level came against the backdrop of benchmark Sensex plunging by 1,624.51 points at 25,741.56 -- its lowest level since August 2014 -- and nearly Rs 7 lakh crore getting wiped out from the investors' wealth. Besides, the rupee also fell the most in 23 months to hit two-year low of 66.64 against the US dollar.

"Prime Minister is of the opinion that in order to further strengthen our economy, we should take more steps," Jaitley said, adding there will be no change in the strategy and the initiative to attract investors would continue.

Jaitley said that further discussions will be held "very shortly" with financial institutions, private and public partners to take "measures to attract investors and use the situation as an opportunity." The Prime Minister, he said, is keen that the present global crisis should be converted into an opportunity for India.

"We are not talking of any packages as of now as our internal fundamentals like industrial production, capital and public expenditure have improved," Jaitley said, adding normal reforms in the pipeline will continue.

Earlier in the day, Jaitley termed the market crash as "transient and temporary" and expressed the hope that the situation would stabilise as domestic macroeconomic indicators were strong.

"There is not a single domestic factor in India which has either contributed or added to it. These are external factors. I have not the least doubt that this turbulence is transient and temporary in nature. Markets will settle down," he said.

PTI 

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