South Africa’s foreign-currency reserves fell the most in more than four years in May after the government repaid a loan.
Gross reserves fell 4.3 percent from the previous month to $48.2 billion, the Pretoria-based central bank said on its website today. Net reserves declined to $45.4 billion from $45.8 billion in April.
South Africa repaid a loan of 1.3 billion euros ($1.7 billion) last month, while a stronger dollar cut the value of holdings of other currencies in reserves, the central bank said.
The bank has been building reserves to act as a buffer against currency volatility. The rand slumped 11 percent against the dollar in May, taking its decline in the first five months of the year to 16 percent. The currency fell 0.2 percent to 9.883 per dollar as of 8:15 a.m. in Johannesburg.
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