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China Likes Euro, Yen; Dollar Not So Much

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economy4 August 16, 2010 (Chinavestor) Sitting on $2.45 trillion in foreign currency reserves, the world's largest stockpile of cash, China has been buying Euro-denominated bonds and upping its holdings of Japanese bonds as well. Last week, Japan's finance ministry said China bought $20.1 billion more in Yen-backed bonds than it sold in the first six months of this year.

Chinese officials said they did not sell Euro-denominated bonds when concerns over Europe's sovereign debt woes were at their apex. Rather, China used the opportunity to boost its holdings of European debt. cut its holdings of U.S. government debt by $72.2 billion, or 7.7 percent, through May from last year’s record of $939.9 billion in July 2009, Bloomberg News reported, citiing the Treasury Department. New data is released today.

Asia's central banks hold about 60% of the world's currency reserves and countries such as India, Malaysia and South Korea have also pared their holdings of U.S. debt in recent months. The International Monetary Fund said in June that global holdings of dollar-denominated debt fell to to 61.5 percent from 62.2 percent as percent of total currency reserves.

China has been clear in its desire that the U.S. reduce its record deficits to encourage investors about the health of the greenback. China is the largest holder of Treasuries, but trimmed its holdings to $867.7 billion in May, from $900.2 billion in April, Bloomberg reported. Both totals are below the record of $939.9 billion in July 2009.



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