Russia buys 900,000 ounces of gold
Duncan Richardson, News Editor
22 May 2014, 10:42 a.m.
The Russian Central Bank bought 900,000 ounces of gold in April according to data released on the banks website. The Central Banks total gold reserves now stand at 34.4 million troy ounces.
Gold only represents 10% of the country’s total foreign exchange reserves which include special drawing rights, gold, foreign exchange and their reserve position at the IMF.
The Russian Central bank has been buying around 500,000 ounces a month, whilst at the same time selling their U.S. Treasuries in an attempt to re-balance their foreign exchange reserves.
Between October 2013 and March 2014 the Central Bank sold over $50 billion of U.S. debt. $26 billion was sold in March alone as the west began to implement sanctions against Moscow for their political and military involvement in the Crimea.
Top Russian officials view gold as an important strategic asset and pictures of Russian President Putin holding large gold bars have appeared many times in the mainstream media.
Many analysts are predicting that Russia may back the ruble by gold in an attempt to protect the currency from devaluation and shocks to the financial system.