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RBI issues revised Prompt Corrective Act

  Nov 12, 2021

RBI issues revised Prompt Corrective Action (PCA) framework

Q What is the context  ?

A The RBI has issued a revised Prompt Corrective Action (PCA) framework for banks to enable supervisory intervention at “appropriate time” and also act as a tool for effective market discipline.

Q What is the PCA framework?

  • Prompt Corrective Action Framework refers to the central bank’s watchlist of weak banks.
  • The regulator imposes restrictions like curbs on lending on such banks.
  • The PCA Framework applies only to commercial banks and does not cover cooperative banks and non-banking financial companies.

Q When was PCA introduced?

  • The RBI’s PCA Framework was introduced in December 2002 as a structured early intervention mechanism along the lines of the US Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s PCA framework.
  • The last PCA Framework was issued by the RBI on April 13, 2017, and implemented with respect to banks’ financials as of March 31, 2017.

Q What are Latest PCA norms ?

  • The revised PCA framework will be effective from January 1, 2022.
  • Capital, asset quality and leverage will be the key areas for monitoring in the revised framework.
  • That apart, RBI has also revised the level of shortfall in total capital adequacy ratio that would push the lender to “risk threshold three” category.

Q When exactly does a bank fall into this list?

  • The RBI has specified certain regulatory trigger points with respect to three parameters for the initiation of the process:
  • Capital-to-risk weighted assets ratio (CRAR): It is a measure of a bank’s capital to ensure that it can absorb a reasonable amount of loss and complies with statutory Capital requirements.
  • Net Non-Performing Assets (NPA)
  • Return on assets (RoA): It is an indicator of how well a company utilizes its assets in terms of profitability.

Q What are the trigger points on capital and how does a breach invite action?


  • If CRAR falls to less than 9 percent, the RBI asks banks to submit a capital restoration plan, restricts new businesses and dividend payments.
  • The RBI also orders recapitalisation, restrictions on borrowings from the inter-bank market, reduction of stake in subsidiaries and reduction of exposure to sensitive sectors.
  • Such sectors include the capital markets, real estate or investments in non-statutory liquidity ratio securities.
  • If CRAR is less than 6 percent but equal to or more than 3 percent, the RBI could take additional steps if the bank fails to submit a recapitalisation plan.

2. NPA levels

  • If net NPAs rise beyond 10 percent but are less than 15 percent, a special drive to reduce bad loans and contain the generation of fresh NPAs begins.
  • The RBI reviews the bank’s loan policy and takes steps to strengthen credit-appraisal skills.

3.Return on assets

  • If RoA is less than 0.25 percent, restrictions on accessing/renewing costly deposits and CDs kick in and the RBI bars the bank from entering new lines of business.
  • The bank’s borrowings from the inter-bank market, making dividend payments and increasing staff will be restricted.

Q What is Significance of PCA ?


  • The financial health of a bank: Essentially PCA helps RBI monitor key performance indicators of banks, and taking corrective measures, to restore the financial health of a bank.
  • Averting a crisis: PCA is intended to help alert the regulator as well as investors and depositors if a bank is heading for trouble. The idea is to head off problems before they attain crisis proportions.