South African gold and foreign currency reserves rose more than expected in September after the National Treasury sold foreign bonds.
Gross reserves gained to $50.02 billion last month from $47.95 billion in August, the Pretoria-based central bank said on its website today. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of seven economists was for reserves to rise to $48.05 billion. Net reserves increased 0.4 percent to $45.75 billion.
“The increase in gross reserves was primarily due to the proceeds of the National Treasury’s foreign bond issuance amounting to $2 billion, which was deposited into the foreign currency deposits received account,” the Reserve Bank said.
While the Reserve Bank has been accumulating foreign currency to help protect against swings in the rand, the bank has said it will not attempt to interfere in the level of the rand. The rand has lost 15 percent against the dollar this year, the worst performer among 16 major currencies tracked by Bloomberg. The spot gold price fell 4.8 percent in September, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
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