Foreign reserves at record $57b


State Bank of Vi?t Nam (SBV) continues to build up its foreign exchange reserves to cushion external shocks, raising the fund to a new record high of more than US$57 billion till February 6.

According to SBV Governor Lê Minh H?ng, SBV’s net purchase of hard currencies this year has been worth more than $4 billion.

SBV affirmed it would continuously try to increase the country’s foreign reserves this year, besides supporting efforts to stabilise the forex market.

Experts have so far been optimistic about the foreign exchange market in 2018, noting that the market would be stable, with the Vietnamese ??ng devaluing slightly by some 0.5-1 percentage points to VN?22,710-VN?22,950.

According to the Bank for Investment and Development of Vi?t Nam’s capital and monetary research division, the country’s overall balance of payment can maintain a healthy surplus of some $8-10 billion this year, which is important for the stability of the forex market.

The good balance of payment is expected due to a predicted trade surplus this year, while the remittance inflow is likely to inch by 5 per cent to some $10.5 billion.

Foreign direct and indirect investment capital inflows are also anticipated to maintain high growth, owing to improvement in the business environment of the country, the division said, forecasting the disbursement of capital source could reach $21-23 billion this year.

Last year, SBV also successfully made a net purchase of $13 billion, raising the forex fund to $53 billion, the highest ever.

Bloomberg reported last year that the Vietnamese ??ng was one of the most stable currencies in Asia in 2017.

H?ng attributed the success to SBV’s insistence in monetary and foreign currency policies.

“The rising foreign reserves has contributed to strengthening Vi?t Nam’s prestige and creating confidence in investors investing in Vi?t Nam,” he said.

According to him, liquidity of the domestic foreign exchange market last year was good and met the legal demands of local organisations and individuals.

Thanks to the high foreign reserves, domestic commercial banks on February 8 continued devaluing the US dollar against the Vietnamese ??ng for the second consecutive session, despite a rise of the greenback in the global market.

The decline was seen in the context of the country’s abundant dollar supply source, while having no demand pressure.

State-owned Vietcombank on February 8 afternoon listed the dollar at VN?22,650 and VN?22,720 for buying and selling, respectively, down 10 ??ng against the previous day and VN?25 from Monday.

BIDV also cut the buying and selling rate by 25 ??ng and 15 ??ng to quote the dollar at VN?22,650 and VN?22,730, respectively, while the decreasing rate at Vietinbank is 9 ??ng to VN?22,652 for buying and VN?22,722 for selling.

The same move was also seen at joint stock commercial banks, with a decrease of 15-25 ??ng per dollar.

ACB devalued the dollar by 20 ??ng against the previous day to VN?22,650 for buying and VN?22,720 for selling, while Techcombank listed it at VN?22,650 and VN?22,740 for buying and selling, respectively.

The State Bank of Vi?t Nam on February 8 also set the daily reference exchange rate at VN?22,435 per dollar, down by 10 ??ng from the previous day.
With the current trade band of +/- 3 per cent, the ceiling rate applied to commercial banks during the day is VN?23,108 and the floor rate is VN?21,762.

In the global market, the dollar was supported after a budget deal in Washington, rising against a broad range of currencies. US congressional leaders reached a two-year budget deal on Wednesday to raise government spending by some $300 billion. The dollar index rose to a two-week high of 90.403 on Wednesday and last stood at 90.251. — VNS

Source: Viet Nam News

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