UPDATE 2-U.S. dollar share of IMF reserves steady at $3.76 trillion -IMF

Mon Sep 30, 2013 2:41pm EDT
 
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NEW YORK, Sept 30 (Reuters) - U.S. dollar reserves held by global central banks were little changed in the second quarter from the prior quarter, data from the International Monetary Fund showed on Monday.

The dollar share of IMF reserves totaled $3.76 trillion in the second quarter from $3.766 trillion in the first quarter, according to the IMF, or about 61.9 percent of total reserves.

Global reserves are assets of central banks held in different currencies primarily used to back their liabilities. Central banks have sometimes cooperated in buying and selling official international reserves to influence exchange rates.

"The composition of foreign exchange reserves update reveals an expected trend," said John Kicklighter, Chief Currency Strategist at DailyFX in New York. "Given the period of low general volatility during the second quarter, with a few hiccups, there is a natural inclination to diversify to a broader mix of currencies and assets to offer diversification and perhaps modestly higher returns."

Euro reserves rose to US$1.446 trillion, or 23.8 percent of the total, in the second quarter from $1.431 trillion in the first quarter,

Since 2009, the euro's share of reserve assets has mostly been declining on concerns about the region's sovereign and economic crisis. At its peak in 2009, the euro's share of reserves reached just under 28 percent.

The yen's share fell to 3.8 percent in the second quarter from 3.9 percent in the prior quarter.

For only the second time the IMF broke down central bank holdings in the Australian and Canadian dollars, which were previously classified under "Other Currencies."   Continued...