SEOUL, Dec. 30 (Yonhap) -- The Bank of Korea (BOK) said Friday it sold a net US$17.54 billion in the third quarter to help ease the decline of the local currency against the U.S. dollar.
The third-quarter dollar selling is the largest since the third quarter of 2019 when the central bank began releasing such data to help boost the transparency of its market operations.
The massive selling of U.S. dollars in the July-September period came as the U.S. Federal Reserve's rate hikes sharply depreciated the value of the local currency, according to data uploaded on the central bank's homepage.
The third-quarter dollar selling followed the $15-billion selling in the second quarter of the year.
In the first nine months of the year, the BOK's dollar selling reached $41.4 billion.
The Korean won fell to a yearly low of 1,439.9 won to the greenback on Sept. 28 from 1,300 won against the dollar on June 23, and 1,400 won on Sept. 22.
The local currency averaged 1,340.23 won to the dollar in the third quarter, down from 1,261.12 won and 1,205.29 won, respectively, in the first and the second quarters of the year.
In September, the country's foreign reserves fell by $19.66 billion, the most since October 2008 when foreign reserves decreased by $27.4 billion.
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