China announced another monthly increase in central bank gold holdings in September, raising them to 54.93 million troy ounces from 54.45 million ounces a month earlier, as it seeks to diversify its foreign exchange reserves.

The amount was almost the same as the 54.94 million ounces calculated by Bloomberg from the value of gold assets of $61.2 billion disclosed by the central bank on 7 October. The September addition was the equivalent of 15 metric tons and takes the hoard to about 1,709 tons.

The country announced increases of about 19 tons for July and 16 tons for August after disclosing on 17 July that holdings had jumped 57% since 2009. While China is the nation with the world’s fifth biggest gold stash, it still only represents 1.6% of its reserves compared with 73% for the US and about 67% for Germany, World Gold Council data show.