Indonesia's forex reserves down $1.7bln in March

The rupiah lost 2% against the dollar in March

  
A Bank Indonesia employee holds Indonesian rupiah bank notes at the bank's headquarters in Jakarta, Indonesia December 16, 2015.

A Bank Indonesia employee holds Indonesian rupiah bank notes at the bank's headquarters in Jakarta, Indonesia December 16, 2015.

REUTERS/Darren Whiteside

JAKARTA: Indonesia's foreign exchange reserves fell by $1.7 billion in March as the central bank defended the rupiah currency amid capital outflows triggered by rising U.S. Treasury yields, data by the central bank showed on Wednesday.

The end-March reserve level of $137.1 billion "remained high" and could cover the cost of 10.1 months of imports, Bank Indonesia said in a statement. The February reserve level of $138.8 billion was the highest on record.

The rupiah lost 2% against the dollar in March, but has regained some of its losses so far this month.

(Reporting by Tabita Diela; Editing by Gayatri Suroyo and Jacqueline Wong) ((tabita.diela@thomsonreuters.com; +628111135032;))

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