중앙은행인 한국은행 부채가 가파르게 증가하고 있다. 반면 순익은 6년 만에 가장 낮은 것으로 조사됐다.
20일 한은 통계에 따르면 지난해 말 한은의 부채는 448조3993억원으로 1년 전 보다 13조(약 3.1%) 가량 늘었고, 5년 전인 2008년과 비교했을 때는 140조9천억(약 45.8) 가량 증가한 수치다.
한편 한은의 지난해 순이익은 2조669억 원으로 전년(3조8854억원)보다 46.8% 감소했다. 2007년 4447억원의 순손실을 기록한 이래 가장 부진한 실적이다.
한은은 지난해 순이익이 큰 폭으로 감소한 것은 외환보유액 운용수익이 미진한 탓으로 분석하고 있다. 하지만 이미 지난해 공공부문과 가계부채가 각각 사상 최대치를 기록한 상황 속에서 한은의 지속적인 부채상승은 화폐가치나, 물가상승에도 영향을 미칠 수 있어 우려를 낳고 있다
지난해 말 현재 한은의 부채를 유형별로 보면 통화량을 흡수하기 위해 발행한 통안증권(163조6541억원), 금융사에서 받아둔 예금(129조8842억원) , 기타 부채(71조1637억원), 화폐발행 (63조3659억원) 등 순이다.
<관련 영문 기사>
BOK’s debt hits W440 trillion-mark
The central bank’s debt level has risen to a new record high of more than 440 trillion won, while its net profit has fallen to the lowest in six years, data showed on Thursday.
The debt grew 3.1 percent to 448.4 trillion won ($417 billion) in December 2013, compared with 435 trillion won from a year earlier, according to the Bank of Korea.
The BOK data comes amid growing concerns about the country’s escalating public and household debts. The 2013 data also shows that the BOK’s debt had grown at a faster pace than that of households. The BOK’s debt saw a sharp 45.8 percent increase, up 140.9 trillion won, from 307.4 trillion won five years ago in late 2008, while household dept expanded 41.2 percent from 723.5 trillion won to 1021.3 trillion won during the same period.
The public sector debt, an index that includes both government liabilities and those of state-run companies, reached 908 trillion won at the end of 2013, up 4.2 percent or 36.9 trillion won on-year, according to the BOK data.
Analysts say the country’s mounting debt will put greater pressure on Lee Ju-yeol, the incoming Bank of Korea governor.
Lee will take over the governorship on April 1 after the incumbent, Kim Choong-soo, completes his four-year term. He pledged during his parliamentary hearing Wednesday that he would manage monetary policy to bring household debt under stricter control.
The central bank ended 2013 with a net profit of 2.07 trillion won -- nearly 47 percent less than the 3.8 trillion won it posted the year before. It is the weakest performance since 2007, when the BOK posted a deficit of 444.7 billion won.
The drop in net income and rise in liability was largely attributable to higher foreign exchange losses, in particular, due to the won’s gradual appreciation against the U.S. dollar, the BOK said.
A stronger won makes the value of assets in foreign currencies smaller when converted to the won. In 2013, the Korean won appreciated 1.4 percent against the greenback.
The largest portion of the central bank’s debt as of late 2013 was 163.6 trillion won in monetary stabilization bonds, which the central bank issued to absorb excess liquidity, followed by 129.8 trillion won in deposits from financial firms, 71.1 trillion won in other types of debt and 63.3 trillion won in banknotes. The other types of debt comprise collaterals such as cash the bank received in return for lending foreign currency-denominated securities.
By Oh Kyu-wook and news reports (email@example.com)