The Bank of Korea announced on Jan. 6 that Korea’s foreign exchange reserves increased by approximately US$4.4 billion last year to total US$367.96 billion as of the end of last year.
The amount decreased by US$1.14 billion in November and US$500 million in the following month as the amount of the central bank’s non-dollar denominated assets converted into the U.S. dollar declined due to the strong dollar attributable to the interest rate hike by the Fed.
The marketable securities assets including the government and corporate bonds associated with major countries like the U.S. increased by US$8.77 billion last month to US$345.24 billion. On the contrary, foreign currency deposits declined by US$9.12 billion to US$13.27 billion and the IMF SDR fell US$150 million to US$3.24 billion. The IMF position remained at US$1.41 billion.
As of the end of November 2015, Korea ranked sixth in the world in the amount of foreign exchange reserves, climbing one notch in a month by overtaking Russia. It was China that was on the top of the list with US$3.4383 trillion. China was followed by Japan (US$1.233 trillion), Saudi Arabia (US$635.5 billion), Switzerland (US$588.3 billion) and Taiwan (US$424.6 billion).