China's yuan funds for foreign exchange snaps 22-month decline

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-10-19 15:32

China's yuan funds for foreign exchange snaps 22-month decline

An employee counts renminbi and dollars at a bank in Qionghai, South China's Hainan province. [Photo/VCG]

BEIJING - China's central bank's yuan outstanding for foreign exchange (forex) rose in September, snapping a 22-month decline, data showed Thursday.

The funds increased by 850 million yuan ($128.6 million) from August to 21.51 trillion yuan, according to the People's Bank of China.

As the Chinese currency is not freely convertible under the capital account, the central bank has to purchase foreign currency generated by the trade surplus and inbound foreign investment, adding funds to the money market.

Such funds are an important indicator of cross-border foreign capital flows and domestic yuan liquidity.

An increase of the funds usually signals eased capital flight pressure, while a decrease of the funds often means higher capital flight pressure.

Analysts attributed the increase in September partly to a stronger yuan. The central parity rate of the Chinese currency, the yuan, once strengthened to 6.4997 against the US dollar last month, breaking the psychologically important 6.5 barrier for the first time since May 2016.

The rise of the funds was also in line with the upward trend of foreign exchange reserves.

The country's forex reserves rose for the eighth month in a row in September as pressure from capital outflow eased, data from the central bank showed last week. Forex reserves totaled $3.1085 trillion by the end of September, increasing $16.98 billion from a month earlier.

The country's economic growth has remained stable and sound since the beginning of the year and the yuan has appreciated steadily, while cross-border capital flows stayed stable, which contributed to the forex reserves' gradual rebound.

China's economy continued its firm growth in the first three quarters of this year, with gross domestic product expanding 6.9 percent year on year to 59.3288 trillion yuan, the National Bureau of Statistics data showed Thursday.

The growth rate held steady from a 6.9-percent increase in the first half of this year and is well above the government's target for the year of 6.5 percent.


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