Reserve Bank of Australia Annual Report – 1984 The Bank's Accounts


In 1983/84, the Bank's aggregate balance sheet expanded by $1,365 million (9 per cent) to $16,888 million. Factors bearing on the main items are discussed elsewhere in the Report.

On the assets side, there was a substantial net increase ($1,510 million) in the Bank's holdings of gold and foreign exchange. The Bank made heavy net purchases of foreign exchange during the first half of the financial year. These purchases were offset partially by net sales made after the Australian dollar was floated on 9 December. Also, there was a net fall in the valuation of gold and foreign exchange as a result of changes in market values and movements in exchange rates over the year. Loans, advances and bills discounted increased by $331 million, mainly in loans to the money market at the end of the year. On the other hand, the Bank reduced its holdings of Commonwealth Government securities by $600 million, mostly in Treasury notes.

The Bank's main liability item, Australian notes on issue, rose by $823 million ($576 million in the previous year). Aggregate balances of depositors (including governments) rose by $445 million. There was a slight decline in reserves arising from valuation adjustments as set out in Note 6 to the accounts.

Operating earnings were $1,039 million (6.2 per cent of assets) – $303 million higher than in 1982/83. The higher earnings came mainly from investment of the increased holdings of foreign exchange. Average earning rate on these investments changed little from 1982/83. There was a decline in the average earning rate on the Bank's holdings of domestic securities.

Before determining net profit, some $3 million was written off Bank premises and $7 million was provided for contingencies in the Rural Credits Department. The resultant aggregate net profit of $1,029 million was appropriated $1,009 million to the Commonwealth, $15 million to the Reserve Bank Reserve Fund, and about $3 million to each of the Rural Credits Department Reserve Fund and the Rural Credits Development Fund.

Changes in accounting practices, which are explained in the notes to the accounts, added about $40 million to the net profits of the Bank in 1983/84.