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India’s Forex reserves rise to $353 billion: RBI

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Mumbai: A strengthening rupee, buoyant equity markets coupled with a fall in dollar value boosted India’s Forex reserves by $2.26 billion, experts said on Saturday.

Overall, the Forex reserves stood at $353.06 billion for the week ended October 9.

“The increase in Forex reserves can be attributed to an appreciation in rupee value and the weakening of US dollar against the major global currencies like Euro, Pound and Yen,” Anindya Banerjee, associate vice president for currency derivatives with Kotak Securities, told IANS.

“It is perceived that the appreciation in rupee value allowed the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to buy more dollars and keep rupee in a comfortable range,” Banerjee said.

The rupee had closed at 64.74 to a US dollar during the week ended October 9. The rupee gained 77 paise on a weekly basis from its previous close at 65.51 to a US dollar in the week ended October 2.

Previously, a rise in the value of gold reserves had added $827.4 million to India’s Forex kitty which swelled to $350.80 billion for the week ended October 2. The reserves had declined by $2.04 billion to $349.97 billion in the week ended September 25.

Furthermore, the data furnished by the RBI in its weekly statistical supplement showed that the foreign currency assets (FCAs) had gained by $2.22 billion to $329.51 billion in the week under review.

The FCA constitutes the largest component of India’s Forex reserves. It consists of US dollars, major non-dollar currencies, securities and bonds bought abroad.

“The dollar in the week under review, had depreciated by close to 1 percent against major global currencies. This added around $1 billion to the FCA,” Banerjee said.

The Indian reserves consist of nearly 20-25 percent of non-dollar currencies. The individual movements of these currencies against the dollar impacts the overall reserve value.

Besides, currency movements, increased inflows into the equity markets supported the Forex’s upwards trajectory.

During the week ended October 9, the barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (S&P Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), rose 858.56 points or 3.17 percent to 27,079.51 points.

The wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) too made gains during the weekly trade ended October 9. It rose 238.8 points or three percent to 8,189.70 points.

“Rising equity markets, increased inflow of foreign funds and appreciating rupee have had a positive impact on the reserves,” Hiren Sharma, senior vice president, currency advisory at Anand Rathi Financial Services, told IANS.

“RBI may have entered into the markets to stabilise the rupee. RBI is seen not to be comfortable with the rupee appreciation.”

During the week under review, the country’s gold reserves remained stagnant at $18.15 billion. The country’s gold reserves had risen by $116.5 million to $18.15 billion during the week ended October 2.

The special drawing rights (SDRs) in the week under review were higher by $30.4 million at $4.07 billion.

The country’s reserve position with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) edged up by $10.5 million to $1.32 billion.

(IANS)

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US dollar index falls, tells latest GDP report

US gross domestic product (GDP) increased at a 2.3-percent annual rate for the first quarter of 2018, beating market consensus of a 2-per cent gain, but lower than the 2.9-percent growth rate in the previous quarter, the Commerce Department said on Friday.

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The US dollar bought 109.03 Japanese yen, lower than 109.37 Japanese yen of the previous session.
USD Image, pixabay

The US dollar index decreased against most other major currencies after wavering between gains and losses, as investors digested the country’s newly-released economic growth report for the first quarter of 2018.

In late New York trading on Friday, the euro rose to $1.2123 from $1.2107 in the previous session, and the British pound was down to $1.3784 from $1.3923 in the previous session. The Australian dollar increased to $0.7581 from $0.7552, Xinua reported.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against six major peers, was down 0.03 per cent at 91.537 in late trading.
US Dollar Image, pixabay

The US dollar bought 109.03 Japanese yen, lower than 109.37 Japanese yen of the previous session.

The US dollar fell to 0.9879 Swiss franc from 0.9893 Swiss franc, and it dipped to 1.2834 Canadian dollars from 1.2872 Canadian dollars.

US gross domestic product (GDP) increased at a 2.3-percent annual rate for the first quarter of 2018, beating market consensus of a 2-per cent gain, but lower than the 2.9-percent growth rate in the previous quarter, the Commerce Department said on Friday.

“As for growth, the quarter was actually pretty good despite the slowdown in headline GDP growth. It would have been 2.9 per cent if not for the hangover from Q4 storm-related spending on autos and home repair,” said Chris Low, chief economist at FTN Financial, in a note.

Also Read: Report: Indian Retailers Trust LAVA Brand The Most

On other economic news, the final reading of US Consumer Sentiment Index came in at 98.8 in April, above market estimates, according to a survey released by the University of Michigan on Friday.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against six major peers, was down 0.03 per cent at 91.537 in late trading. (IANS)

 

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