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Korea’s monetary stabilization bonds break W180tr

The monetary stabilization bonds issued by the nation’s central bank soared to 180.6 trillion won ($168.1 billion) during the first nine months of this year, the Bank of Korea said Thursday.

The figures are up 9.5 percent from a year earlier, the bank added.

The bonds grew at the fastest pace since October 2010 when MSBs surged 10.1 percent compared to the same period in 2013.

This year’s increase was double the growth rate of the country’s nominal gross domestic product over the same period, the BOK data showed.

Total issuance of MSBs had remained at around 163 trillion won from 2010 to 2013. But over the past year it has risen, as the bank sought to sterilize the excess liquidity stemming from the nation’s trade surpluses.

Monetary stabilization bonds are a policy tool devised by the Korean government to mop up excess liquidity to help better manage export-driven economic growth. MSBs have consequently become a major instrument in the Bank of Korea’s open market operations.