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Rise in S. Korea's foreign reserves

SOUTH Korea's foreign currency reserves rose slightly last month as assets yielded profits and local banks repaid some debts borrowed from the holdings, the central bank said yesterday.

The reserves totaled US$201.74 billion at the end of January, up US$520 million from the end of December, the Bank of Korea said.

It was the second straight monthly rise.

The reserves also increased in December, ending an eight-month drop caused by the global economic crises and credit crunch.

The main reasons for the January rise are that the reserves ?? kept in bank deposits, bonds and other forms of securities ?? yielded interest and other profits, and that local banks returned some debts borrowed from the reserves, the central bank said.

At the end of December, South Korea's reserves were one of the largest in the world. The central bank statement did not provide a ranking for January.


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