U.S. dollar share of global reserves dips in second quarter

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. dollar’s share of currency reserves reported to the International Monetary Fund was 61.3% in the second quarter, down from the first three months of the year, IMF data showed on Wednesday.

A U.S. Dollar banknote is seen in this illustration taken May 26, 2020. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

A year earlier, the dollar accounted for 61.3% of global reserves, still the largest share among all currencies, while the share was 61.8% in the first quarter.

IMF data also showed global reserves rose to a record $12.031 trillion in the second quarter, from 11.703 trillion in the first quarter.

Reserves held in U.S. dollars totaled $6.9 trillion, or roughly 61.3% of allocated reserves in the second quarter. In the first quarter, dollar reserves were at $6.77 trillion, or a 61.8% share.

“The U.S. dollar still maintains a dominant position as a global reserve currency,” Paresh Upadhyaya, director of currency strategy and portfolio manager for Amundi Pioneer Asset Management in Boston, said in a recent research note.

“While there has been a notable decline in the U.S. share of global growth, the US remains the largest economy in the world,” he added.

The dollar fell 3% in the second quarter, its worst loss since June 2017, as expectations for a swift recovery from the COVID-19 recession made investors exit safe havens and buy into riskier currencies.

Global reserves are assets of central banks held in different currencies, and which are used primarily to support their liabilities. Central banks sometimes use reserves to help support their respective currencies.

The euro’s share of global reserves was steady at 20.3% in the second quarter, from 20% in the previous three months, IMF data showed. At its peak in 2009, the euro’s share of global reserves was 28 percent.

The yen’s share of currency reserves was likewise stable at 5.7% in the second quarter, from 5.8% in the first.

The Chinese yuan’s share was also little changed at 2% of total allocated reserves.

Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss; Editing by Bernadette Baum and Paul Simao