Norges Bank

Press release

Norges Bank’s accounts for 2000

Norges Bank’s accounts for 2000 show a profit of NOK 13.7 billion, compared with a deficit of NOK 3.1 billion in 1999. The accounts were approved at a meeting of the Supervisory Council of Norges Bank on Thursday, 15 February 2001.

According to the existing guidelines, NOK 10.7 billion will be transferred to the Treasury from the Transfer Fund. Norges Bank’s transfer to the Treasury is based on an average of the Bank’s allocations to the Transfer Fund in the three preceding years. In addition, interest payments to the Treasury amounted to NOK 3.6 billion in 2000, against NOK 1.8 billion in 1999.

The accounts must be assessed against the background of Norges Bank’s responsibilities. One of the Bank’s main responsibilities is the issue of banknotes and coins. This means that the Bank will at all times have debt that is not interest-bearing. The offsetting entry is the Bank’s interest-bearing claims on other participants. The banknote monopoly thus results in central bank accounts which, prior to adjustments for fluctuations in the exchange rate and securities prices, will normally show a profit (seigniorage). Moreover, a special feature of Norges Bank’s accounts is that the result is largely determined by the monetary policy conducted in the accounting year.

In 2000, the depreciation of the Norwegian krone against the euro and the US dollar, combined with a decline in bond yields in markets where Norges Bank has invested, resulted in exchange gains and capital gains totalling NOK 8.1 billion, compared with a loss of NOK 9.0 billion in 1999. Of the capital losses recorded in 1999, NOK 3.3 billion reflected the changeover to valuation of securities at market value.

At the end of 2000, Norges Bank’s international reserves amounted to NOK 186.0 billion at market value and taking into account repurchase agreements and deposits, which is NOK 18.9 billion higher than the end-1999 figure. International reserves comprise foreign exchange reserves, gold and claims on the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Foreign exchange reserves increased by NOK 21.0 billion in 2000, amounting to NOK 174.5 billion at the end of the year. The increase is primarily due to a return of NOK 17.6 billion on the foreign exchange reserves.

International reserves, investments for the Petroleum Fund and other foreign assets had a total market value of NOK 586.3 billion at the end of 2000, compared with NOK 401.1 billion in 1999.



Press telephone: +47 21 49 09 30

Published 15 February 2001 14:23