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Posted : 2013-08-05 09:24
Updated : 2013-08-05 09:24

Foreign reserves reach $329 billion in July



The nation's foreign-exchange reserves amounted to $329 billion in July, hitting the record high, according to the central bank Monday.

The Bank of Korea said this compares to June's largest drop in 13 months amid steady appreciation of non-dollar assets due mainly to weaker U.S. dollar.

The July figure represents a rise of $3.27 billion from the previous month.

The FX reserves fell by $1.66 billion in June, the largest monthly decline since May 2012, due mainly to repayment of maturing currency stabilization bonds.

The previous record high of the FX reserves was $328.91 billion tallied in January.

Foreign reserves consist of securities and deposits denominated in overseas currencies, along with International Monetary Fund reserve positions, special drawing rights and gold bullion.

The BOK said that the investment profit gained ground and the strength in the euro and the yen raised their dollar conversion value, boosting the reserves.

The euro appreciated 1.8 percent to the U.S. dollar, while the yen gained 0.4 percent against the greenback.

Korea's growing FX reserves and the current account surplus serve as buffers for the local financial markets as global markets remain on edge amid speculation over U.S. stimulus tapering.

Despite monthly fluctuations, the FX reserves have been on the rise, aided by the continued trade surplus and foreign capital inflows.

As of the end of June, South Korea was the world's seventh-largest holder of foreign-exchange reserves.

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