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Seoul FX reserves slightly drop in Feb.

All News 06:00 March 04, 2020

SEOUL, March 4 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's foreign exchange (FX) reserves dropped slightly from a month earlier in February, central bank data showed Wednesday, largely on the strengthening of the U.S. dollar that reduced the dollar value of the country's reserves held in other currencies.

The country's FX reserves came to US$409.17 billion as of end-February, down $480 million from the record high of $409.65 billion tallied a month before, according to the data from the Bank of Korea (BOK).

In the file photo, a bank official inspects U.S. dollar bills at a Seoul bank. (Yonhap)

The BOK attributed the drop to the advance of the U.S. greenback against other currencies.

"This (drop) was mainly due to a cut in the dollar value of other foreign denominated assets caused by the strengthening of the U.S. dollar," it said.

At the end of February, the dollar traded at about $1.289 per British pound, up 1.5 percent from $1.309 per pound a month earlier, the BOK said in a press release.

The dollar also jumped 2.1 percent against the Australian dollar over the cited period, fetching $0.6579 per Australian dollar at end-February instead of $0.6718 at end-January.

As of end-February, South Korea held $371.22 billion in foreign securities, down $7.23 billion from a month earlier.

Its foreign savings, on the other hand, jumped $6.8 billion over the cited period.

Foreign exchange reserves also include special drawing rights, gold bullion and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) reserve position.

The country's gold holdings remained unchanged at $4.79 billion, while its special drawing rights slipped $60 million to $3.27 billion.

South Korea's FX reserves are the world's ninth largest.

bdk@yna.co.kr
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