Reserve Bank of Australia Annual Report – 1983 The Bank's Accounts


In 1982/83, the Bank's aggregate balance sheet expanded by $2,776 million, or 22 per cent to $15,523 million. Factors bearing on the main items have been discussed elsewhere in the Report.

The major component of the expansion in the balance sheet was a substantial increase ($4,233 million) in gold and foreign exchange. This increase came about through both net purchases of foreign currency from the private sector and upward revaluation ($1,756 million) of gold and foreign exchange resulting from higher market values of foreign assets and from adjustments to the exchange rate, affecting the conversion of these values to the Australian dollar. Holdings of domestic government securities declined by $1,299 million; a rise in holdings of Treasury notes was more than offset by a fall in holdings of Treasury bills; at end year the Bank held no Treasury bills, compared with $1,400 million held at 30 June 1982.

Australian notes on issue increased by $576 million in 1982/83 ($743 million in the previous year). Deposits of governments rose by $369 million. Details of the substantial rise in contingency reserves are set out in Note 6 to the accounts.

Total operating earnings rose by $184 million to $736 million, which is equivalent to 4.7 per cent of assets. The increased earnings were mainly attributable to the expansion of the Bank's balance sheet. Higher average earning rates on domestic government securities also contributed. On the other hand, earning rates on investments in foreign currencies were lower than in 1981/82; in particular, the average earning rate of 9.2 per cent on holdings denominated in US dollars compared with 13.7 per cent in the previous year. Interest paid by the Bank on Statutory Reserve Deposit Accounts rose in 1982/83, reflecting the full-year effect of the increase from 2½ to 5 per cent per annum (effective 12 May 1982) in the interest rate paid on these Accounts.

Before striking net profits figures, $58 million was transferred to reserves for contingencies and general purposes and about $3 million was written off Bank premises. The resultant aggregate net profits of $676 million were appropriated $661 million to the Commonwealth, $10 million to the Reserve Bank Reserve Fund, $2.4 million to the Rural Credits Department Reserve Fund, and $2.4 million to the Rural Credits Development Fund.