LONDON ⸺ The Chinese yuan is on course to become a much more influential part of the global financial system with almost a third of central banks planning to add the currency to their reserve assets, a closely-followed survey showed on Wednesday.
The Global Public Investor survey, published annually by the London-based OMFIF think tank, showed 30% of central banks plan to increase yuan holdings over the next 12-24 months, compared to just 10% last year.
Other eye-catching findings from the report showed 75% of central banks now think monetary policy is having excessive influence on financial markets, although only 42% think these policies need to be actively reconsidered.
In stark contrast to the yuan, 20% of central banks plan to reduce their holdings of the U.S. dollar over the next 12-24 months, 18% plan to reduce their euro holdings and 14% want to cut their holdings of eurozone sovereign debt.
Only 59% of central banks would be willing to use more than 30% of their reserves in the event of a serious currency shock, while 45% of pension funds now invest in gold, which was well up from 30% in last year’s survey.
It also showed that central banks, sovereign wealth funds and public pension funds now control a record total of $42.7 trillion worth of assets. Central bank reserves alone were up $1.3 trillion to $15.3 trillion as of the end of 2020.
Reporting by Marc Jones; Editing by Tom Arnold and Edmund Blair; Reuters