The International Monetary Fund said Friday it will separately identify China’s yuan currency in its official foreign-exchange reserves database starting Oct. 1, a move prompted by the yuan’s new status in the fund’s reserve currency basket. The move will aid China’s effort to secure a bigger role for its currency, aka the renminbi (RMB), by revealing quarterly reserve holdings of yuan among the IMF’s 188 member countries.
Last November, the IMF agreed to include the yuan in its special drawing rights basket after determining that it is “freely usable.”
Friday’s move means the renminbi will join the other currencies that are separately identified in the IMF’s quarterly survey of foreign-exchange reserves: the U.S. dollar, euro, Japanese yen, British pound sterling, Swiss franc, Australian dollar and Canadian dollar. All other currencies are lumped together.
“IMF member countries will be able to record as official reserves their holdings of RMB−denominated external assets that are readily available for meeting balance of payments financing needs,” the fund said in a statement.
The change will be effective in time for the fourth-quarter survey to be published in March 2017, the IMF said.