BEIJING, March 27 (Xinhua) -- China's banking industry witnessed an expansion in external financial assets in the fourth quarter last year, official data showed Monday.
External financial assets of Chinese banks, excluding the central bank, climbed to 877.6 billion U.S. dollars by the end of 2016, up from 827.6 billion dollars by the end of September last year, according to the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE).
Meanwhile, the nation's banking industry recorded 964.5 billion dollars of external liabilities as of 2016, resulting in net external liabilities of 86.9 billion dollars, down from 152 billion dollars of net external liabilities three months ago, said SAFE.
By December, 670.5 billion dollars of external financial assets of Chinese banks were deposits and loans, while 95.2 billion dollars were bond investment and 111.9 billion dollars were other assets, including equities.
SAFE started publishing external financial assets and liabilities banking data for the first time in March 2016.
The data reflect foreign-related business operations of China's banking industry as well as the global allocation of their assets and liabilities, which is important for improving statistical transparency and monitoring cross-border capital flows.