According to the central bank’s (BDL) balance sheet, total assets recorded an increase by 2.34% since year-start, to stand at $144.66B in mid-March 2020.In details, BDL foreign assets (constituting 24.71% of total assets) recorded a year to date decline by 4.09% ($1.52B) to reach $35.74B in mid-March 2020. In fact, the Central Bank is using its foreign assets to cover the imports of essential goods, including fuel, wheat and medicine. Worth mentioning that, from end of February till mid-March, foreign assets retreated by $41.90M from which $15M related to the decrease in the Eurobonds held by the BDL to reach $5.35B in mid-March 2020.
Meanwhile, BDL’s Securities portfolio (26.47% of total assets) added 0.79% year-to-date (YTD) to settle at $38.29B in mid-March 2020. In their turn, Loans to the local financial sector (10.24% of total assets) witnessed a decrease by 0.81% to $14.82B in mid-March 2020. As for Gold assets (10.09% of total assets), they recorded an increase of 4.72% YTD, to stand at $14.72B. In details, Gold prices rose by 7.75% since the start of the year to $1,634.52/ounce by the mid-march, 2020.
On the liabilities side, Financial Sector Deposits (78.27% of BDL’s total liabilities) rose by 1.09% YTD to settle at $113.23B in mid-March 2020, while Public sector deposits (3.32% of total liabilities) decreased by 11.84% YTD to stand at $4.80B over the same period, as the government was withdrawing these deposits to cover its budget deficit. Worth mentioning that Currency in Circulation Outside BDL (6.29% of BDL’s total liabilities) rose by 29.89% YTD to stand at $9.10B in mid-March 2020. In fact, the increase in Currency in circulation ( in addition to Demand deposits in LBP) is due to the financial instability and to Lebanese preferring to keep cash money.
BDL Total and Foreign Assets in Mid-March