China on gold-buying spree amid global push to end US dollar dominance

Beijing has joined the global gold rush, rising its gold reserves for 2 months in a row to 59.94 million ounces. China has lengthy been silent on its holdings of gold as many international locations are turning away from the dollar.

China’s nationwide gold reserves rose by 0.38 million ounces (practically 12 tons) on the end of January from 59.56 million ounces on the end of December 2018, in accordance to knowledge launched by the People’s Bank of China on Monday. The worth the nation’s holdings of the valuable metallic reached US$79.319 billion, rising by greater than $Three billion in contrast to the end of final yr.

Before December, the Chinese central financial institution had not reported a rise in gold reserves for greater than two years, and the official figures remained unchanged from October 2016 to November 2018, standing at 59.24 million ounces.

Gold costs surged following the information, with futures climbing to $1,315.20 per ounce on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, China’s overseas change reserves rose by $15.2 billion in January to $3.088 trillion. That is sort of $6 billion greater than economists polled by Reuters anticipated. The surge got here because the yuan hit its highest stage in opposition to the US dollar in over six months, pushed by hopes for progress in US-China commerce talks.

The quantity of gold added by global central banks to their coffers in 2018 hit the second highest annual quantity on report, in accordance to World Gold Council (WGC) estimates. Countries purchased 651.5 metric tons final yr, and now maintain practically 34,000 tons. Russia led the gold purchases because it seeks to scale back its reliance on the US dollar, adopted by different large patrons like Turkey, Kazakhstan, India, Iraq, Poland, and Hungary.

China can be making an attempt “to diversify its reserves” away from the dollar, in accordance to Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at foreign money dealer OANDA. The analyst told the South China Morning Post that the state of affairs in global politics, together with a commerce conflict with the US, are driving China’s curiosity to purchase gold as a “safe haven hedge.” 

In January, China dropped to sixth place among the many world’s largest holders of the yellow metallic behind Russia. With its 67.6 million ounces of gold, Russia now stands in fifth place behind the US, Germany, France, and Italy.