Notching up an 11th straight month of gains, the reserves rose US$20.2 billion
in December to US$3.14 trillion, the highest since September 2016 and the
biggest monthly gain since July, central bank data showed.
For the full year, China’s forex reserves rose US$129.5 billion from US$3.011
trillion at the end of 2016. That is the first annual rise since 2014.
The yuan has risen for 11 months in a row, a sharp contrast to a year ago when
it fell to nearly 7 to the US dollar, pushing the forex reserves below the
psychologically important US$3 trillion mark as the central bank sought to
defend the currency’s value.
“The rise of the yuan is due to many factors, but the combination of capital
controls and the US$1.5 trillion-plus goods trade surplus accumulated in
2015-2017 could have played the most important role.”
The value of the country’s gold reserves rose to US$76.47 billion at the end
of December, up from US$75.83 billion a month earlier, according to the People’s
Bank of China