SA’s gross reserves pick up in December
SA’s gross reserves rose $313m to $47.4bn in December, according to data from the South African Reserve Bank.
The increase in gross reserves partially reflected the maturing of foreign swaps conducted for liquidity management purposes, according to the Bank data released on Monday.
Foreign exchange reserves are an important indicator of a country’s ability to repay foreign debt in the short term and are used for currency defence.
Reserves are also taken into account when determining a country’s credit rating. The country recently managed to maintain its investment-grade status with all three major agencies.
The increase in gross reserves was partially offset by the decline in the gold price, a strong dollar and foreign exchange payments made on behalf of government.
The international liquidity position (ILP) dropped $267m to $40.8bn in December from $41.08bn in November
The decline in the international liquidity position reflected an increase in the gross reserves and change in foreign currency received.