Irish central bank makes first reserve gold purchases since 2009

Central Bank of Ireland. Credit: Wikipedia

The Irish central bank has been adding to its gold reserves as inflation in the euro area runs far ahead of the European Central Bank target. 

The Dublin-based institution’s purchase of 2 tons of gold in recent months has ended a more than decade-long period of unchanged holdings of the precious metal.

When asked about the reasoning behind the purchases, a spokesperson said that the central bank’s gold transactions “are commercially sensitive and no further comment can be made at this time.”

While the institution has given no reason for the increase in its stockpile, the Governor Gabriel Makhlouf last week warned that policy makers cannot afford to be complacent on inflation. 

Central bankers’ appetite for gold grew in the first half of the year, with global reserves expanding 333.2 tons, 39% higher than the five-year average for the period, according to the World Gold Council, which noted strong purchases by Thailand, Hungary and Brazil. 

Singapore increased its gold reserves by about 20% earlier this year in a largely under-the-radar move the central bank says will ensure the resiliency of its portfolio.

(By Lorcan Roche Kelly)

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