Bank Negara Malaysia's International Reserves Dip Slightly to US$113.4 Billion in April 2024

Bank Negara Malaysia's international reserves dipped to $113.4B, down 0.4% from March. The reserves remain adequate to finance 5.6 months of imports and cover short-term debt, but the decrease warrants monitoring by policymakers and analysts.

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Wojciech Zylm
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Bank Negara Malaysia's International Reserves Dip Slightly to US$113.4 Billion in April 2024

Bank Negara Malaysia's International Reserves Decrease to US$113.4 Billion

Bank Negara Malaysia's international reserves decreased to US$113.4 billion as of April 15, 2024, down from US$113.8 billion as of March 29, 2024. "The reserves position is sufficient to finance 5.6 months of imports of goods and services and is 1.0 times the total short-term external debt," according to a statement from the central bank.

The main components of the reserves include foreign currency reserves of US$100.1 billion, International Monetary Fund reserves of US$1.4 billion, special drawing rights of US$5.7 billion, gold of US$2.8 billion, and other reserve assets of US$2.4 billion.

Bank Negara Malaysia releases data on foreign exchange reserves every two weeks. The 0.4% decrease in reserves from March 29 to April 15 amounts to a reduction of approximately US$400 million.

Malaysia's total assets stood at RM630.93 billion, comprising various assets including gold, foreign exchange, and other reserves. The capital and liabilities included paid-up capital, reserves, currency in circulation, deposits by financial institutions, federal government deposits, and other liabilities.

Why this matters: The level of international reserves held by a country's central bank is an important indicator of its financial stability and ability to meet international payment obligations. A decrease in reserves, even if relatively small, can signal potential economic challenges or shifts in financial flows that warrant monitoring by policymakers, investors, and analysts.

Bank Negara Malaysia emphasized that the current reserve position remains adequate to finance nearly six months of imports and cover the nation's short-term external debt obligations. The central bank continues to closely monitor global economic developments and their potential impact on Malaysia's financial system.

Key Takeaways

  • BNM's international reserves decreased to US$113.4 bil as of April 15, 2024.
  • Reserves can finance 5.6 months of imports and cover 1.0x short-term debt.
  • Reserves include US$100.1 bil in foreign currency, US$5.7 bil in SDRs, and more.
  • Reserves decreased 0.4% or US$400 mil from March 29 to April 15, 2024.
  • Reserve levels are an indicator of financial stability and ability to meet obligations.