China's foreign exchange reserves fell more than expected in September as the yuan currency weakened further against the U.S. dollar amid mounting trade tension with the U.S.
Reserves fell $22.69 billion in September to $3.087 trillion, compared with a decline of $8.23 billion in August, data from the People's Bank of China, the central bank, showed on Sunday.
Wang Chunying, spokesperson for the State Administration of Foreign Exchange, said during a press conference on Sunday that the slight drop can be attributed to combined factors including the exchange rate translation and the change of assets prices.
The yuan fell for the sixth straight month in September as the U.S. dollar remained strong, suggesting the Chinese government may be in no rush to intervene as a weaker currency could support its exporters amid the escalating China-U.S. trade frictions.
Since the start of this year, the exchange rate of the yuan has seen strengthened flexibility in bi-directional volatility and the scale of the country's foreign exchange reserves has maintained stability, said Wang.
Looking ahead, Wang believes the sound and stable economic fundamentals will continue to provide a firm foundation for the steady operation of the foreign exchange market. And China's foreign exchange reserves are expected to keep steady in fluctuations, she added.
The value of China's gold reserves fell to $70.327 billion at the end of September, from $71.228 billion at the end of August.