Money & Banking

Gold in RBI’s forex reserves rise 11% to 744 tonnes

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on October 28, 2021

In value terms, share of gold in reserves declined to about 5.88%

The Reserve Bank of India’s holding of gold in foreign exchange reserves went up about 11 per cent year-on-year (y-o-y) to 743.84 metric tonnes as on September-end 2021 against 668.25 metric tonnes as on September-end 2020.

However, in value terms, the share of gold in the reserves declined to about 5.88 per cent against about 6.69 per cent in the year-ago period, as per the RBI’s half yearly report – Management of Foreign Exchange Reserves: April-September 2021.

Compared to September-end 2020 share of gold in the reserves (in value terms) at 5.87 per cent, the share rose marginally as on September-end 2021.

While 451.54 metric tonnes (366.91 metric tonnes as on September-end 2020) of gold is held overseas in safe custody with the Bank of England and the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), 292.30 metric tonnes (unchanged) of gold is held domestically.

Import cover

According to the report, at the end of June 2021, the foreign exchange reserves cover of imports decreased to 15.8 months from 17.4 months at March-end 2021. At the end of June 2020, the foreign exchange reserves cover of imports stood at 14.8 months.

The ratio of short-term debt (original maturity) to reserves, which was 17.5 per cent at end-March 2021, declined to 16.8 per cent at June-end 2021. This ratio stood at 20.8 per cent at June-end 2020.

The ratio of volatile capital flows (including cumulative foreign portfolio inflows and outstanding short-term debt) to reserves declined from 69 per cent at March-end 2021 to 65.5 per cent at June-end 2021. This ratio stood at 72.1 per cent at June-end 2020.

As on September-end 2021, of the total foreign currency assets (FCA) – comprising multi-currency assets that are held in multi-asset portfolios – of $573.60 billion ($502.16 billion as on September-end 2020), $383.74 billion ($370.59 billion) was invested in securities, $147.86 billion ($124.16 billion) was deposited with other central banks and the BIS and the balance $42 billion ($7.44 billion) comprised deposits with commercial banks overseas.

During the half-year period under review, reserves increased from $576.98 billion as on March-end 2021 to $635.36 billion as on September-end 2021.

On a balance of payments basis (that is excluding valuation effects), foreign exchange reserves increased by $31.9 billion during April-June 2021 as compared with $19.8 billion during April-June 2020.

Foreign exchange reserves in nominal terms (including valuation effects) increased by $34.1 billion during April-June 2021 as compared with $27.9 billion in the corresponding period of 2020-21.

Published on October 27, 2021

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