S. African Reserve Bank 'Comfortable’ With Gold Holdings

The South African Reserve Bank said it’s comfortable with its holdings of gold, which make up about 10 percent of foreign reserves.

South Africa doesn’t have plans to boost gold reserves because they already account for 10 percent of the total, unlike many central banks that are buying bullion to reach that ratio as prices fall, Deputy Governor Daniel Mminele told reporters in Pretoria today.

“At this particular point in time we seem quite comfortable,” Mminele said. “Some of these central banks would come off very low levels and are looking at getting to levels of around 10 percent of holdings in gold and we’re already there.”

Gold has fallen as much as 29 percent from its September 2011 record of $1,923.70 an ounce after rallying for 12 straight years. South Africa’s central bank holds four million fine ounces in gold, Mminele said.

South Africa’s gold and foreign currency reserves rose 0.6 percent to $50 billion in April, according to the Reserve Bank. Gold holdings fell 8.3 percent from a month earlier to $5.9 billion.