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Singapore’s central financial institution MAS boosts gold reserves to almost 200 tonnes

In January 2023, Singapore’s central financial institution, the Financial Authority of Singapore (MAS) returned to gold shopping for once more, including an enormous 44.6 tonnes of gold to its official reserves, and thereby boosting Singapore’s gold holdings from 153.8 tonnes to 198.4 tonnes.

In share phrases, this gold shopping for represents an unbelievable 29% enhance in Singapore’s gold holdings in only one month. In actual fact, that is Singapore’s second largest largest gold buy ever in a single month, the one gold buy that was bigger was when Singapore first purchased 100 tonnes of gold from South Africa in 1968.

In sometimes discreet style, MAS didn’t announce its current gold shopping for by way of press launch or by way of every other publicity. It merely up to date the information on its web site within the newest model (finish of January) of a month-to-month report known as ‘Worldwide Reserves and International Forex Liquidity’.

Singapore: MAS Gold Holdings as of finish December 2022

Trying on the December 2022 model of this report reveals that the reserve asset of “Gold (together with gold deposits and, if applicable, gold swapped)” confirmed a quantity in high-quality troy ounces of 4,943,441 ozs for December 2022.

Then when the January 2023 model of the report was revealed on the finish of February, it now reveals a quantity in high-quality troy ounces for gold of 6,378,041 ozs. That’s a rise of 1,434,600 ozs, or 44.62 tonnes. And in share phrases, a 29.02% enhance.

Singapore: MAS Gold Holdings as of finish January 2023

71 tonnes in lower than 2 Years

That is the second main gold shopping for spree by Singapore’s MAS in lower than 2 years. The final time Singapore added to its financial gold reserves was over a 2-month interval between Might and June 2021, when it purchased 26.35 tonnes of gold over the 2 months, of which 16.4 tonnes was in Might 2021 and 9.95 tonnes in June 2021. These additions took Singapore’s gold holdings from 127.42 tonnes to 153.76 tonnes.

Previous to Might-June 2021, Singapore had held 127.42 tonnes of gold, a determine which had not modified since a minimum of 2002 (way back to World Gold Council data go). 100 tonnes of this whole had been bought by Singapore in a single transaction in 1968 (whereas attending a World Financial institution assembly in Washington D.C), and the opposite 27.42 tonnes was added at different undefined occasions between after 1968 however earlier than 2002.

Within the fashionable period, the most recent gold shopping for by MAS implies that in simply 20 months since Might 2021, Singapore has added made substantial gold purchases on three events (Might 2021, June 2021 and January 2023), including a complete of 71 tonnes of gold to its reserves.

The Might-June 2021 gold purchases by MAS have been additionally very low key, and though they have been added to the MAS ‘Worldwide Reserves and International Forex Liquidity’ experiences in June and July 2021, respectively, nobody observed these updates till the information was additionally up to date onto the IMF’s Worldwide Monetary Statistics (IFS) database in November 2021. See BullionStar article  “In low key transfer, Singapore’s central financial institution provides 26 tonnes to its gold reserves”, dated 27 November 2021 for particulars.

Financial Authority of Singapore

Common Shopping for Worth of US$ 1912

In a footnote to its ‘Worldwide Reserves and International Forex Liquidity’. MAS states that the values of its ‘Official reserve property and different overseas forex property’ are said as ‘Guide worth of property transformed at market trade charges prevailing at finish of month.”

This utilization of e-book worth valuation is definitely fairly helpful because it permits as much as roughly calculate what worth MAS paid for the brand new 44.6 tonnes of gold.

As of finish of December 2022, the 4,943,411 ozs of gold held by MAS was valued at a mixed US$ 1.7945 billion.

As of the top of January 2023, the 6,378,041 ozs of gold held by MAS was valued at a mixed US $ 4.5384 billion.

Which means that the brand new 1,434,600 ozs of gold purchased by MAS in January was valued at a e-book worth of US$ 2.7439 billion, which is a median buy worth of US$ 1912.66. This worth is consistent with gold costs throughout January 2023, the place the gold worth started the 12 months within the US$ 1800s, however rose to above US$ 1900 on 13 January after which stayed within the US$ 1910-1930 vary for the remainder of the month.

The typical LBMA PM closing gold worth in January 2023 was US$ 1898.62. The max shut was US$ 1932.45 on 26 January, the min shut was US$ 1834 on 5 January. MAS subsequently seems to have made its current gold purchases largely throughout the second half of January 2023.

Showcase within the GIC (Sovereign Wealth Fund) Workplace in Singapore commemorating Singapore’s first gold buy of 100 tonnes in 1968 – “A Torn Greenback Invoice And Gold For Singapore”.

On a e-book worth foundation, the addition of 44.6 tonnes of gold additionally implies that Singapore’s whole gold reserves now represent 1.56% of its official reserve property, up from 0.62% of official reserve property on the finish of December.


For such an enormous central financial institution gold shopping for occasion, this newest buy of 44.6 tonnes of gold by Singapore throughout January has had nearly no protection within the mainstream monetary media.

That is regardless of Singapore’s buy, at 44.6 tonnes, being the largest single central financial institution gold buy of 2023, and regardless of it additionally being greater than the overall gold holding additions which China claims to have revamped each January and February (39.8 tonnes in whole).

The MAS January gold buy, which boosts Singapore’s gold holdings as much as 198.4 tonnes, additionally shoots Singapore 3 locations larger within the rankings of ‘World Official Gold Holdings by Nation’, and Singapore now sits in 26th place, behind Belgium which claims to carry (227.4 tonnes of gold), and Algeria (which claims to carry 173.6 tonnes of gold.

As to the place Singapore’s 198.4 tonnes of gold is saved, that’s the billion greenback query. There may be hardly something written about gold within the MAS annual experiences, besides that gold “is held as a long-term funding“. There isn’t a point out in any respect within the annual experiences or monetary statements of the place MAS claims that Singapore’s gold is being vaulted.

It’s possible {that a} portion of Singapore’s gold is saved within the vaults of the Financial institution of England in London, and probably one other half is saved in Switzerland underneath the custody of the Financial institution for Worldwide Settlements (BIS) – which makes use of vaults of the Swiss Nationwide Financial institution.

There have been rumours that a few of  Singapore’s nationwide gold reserves are additionally held in secret subterranean vaults in Singapore guarded by legendary Gurkhas of the Singapore Police Drive’s Gurkha Contingent. As to how true these rumours are, one must ask the Singapore’s MAS, and MAS would almost certainly, politely decline to say.

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