The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has announced that it increased its gold reserves by around 30% in January, following the lead of other central banks such as China and Turkey. The Monetary Authority of Singapore’s gold reserves stood at 6.4 million ounces, or 199 tonnes, up from 4.9 million ounces in December 2021. The value of gold reserves stood at US$4.5 billion at the end of January.
According to Ronan Manly, a precious metals analyst at Bullion Star, this is the second-largest gold purchase within a month by Singapore banks. The most recent purchase was in 1968 when the Monetary Authority of Singapore bought 100 tonnes of gold from South Africa.
Central banks around the world have been increasing their holdings of gold bullion, as the US dollar has weakened over the past few months. Retail buyers have also been buying more gold as a hedge against geopolitical instability and rising inflation. China’s central bank has increased gold reserves for four consecutive months as of February, while Turkey’s central bank bought the most gold among central banks in 2022.
According to the World Gold Council (WGC), central banks around the world bought 1,136 tonnes of gold as reserves in 2022, worth $70 billion. This is the highest value since 1967. WGC analyst Krishna Gopal said that banks around the world are turning to gold reserves, believing that gold will remain valuable in difficult situations. Gold also allows central banks to diversify their exposure beyond other assets such as US government bonds and the dollar.