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China Oct FX reserves post modest increase, less than forecast

BEIJING, Nov 7 (Reuters) - China's foreign exchange reserves rose in October for a ninth straight month, but at a slower pace than market expectations, as tighter regulations and a stronger yuan continued to discourage capital outflows.

Reserves climbed by $700 million in October to $3.109 trillion, compared with an increase of $17 billion in September, central bank data showed on Tuesday.

Economists polled by Reuters had expected reserves to rise by $9.5 billion last month to $3.118 trillion.

It was the first time that China's reserves have climbed for nine months in a row since June 2014, and brought its stockpile -- the world's largest -- to the highest since October last year.

Capital flight had been seen as a major risk for China at the start of the year, but a combination of tighter capital controls and a faltering dollar helped the yuan stage a strong turnaround, bolstering confidence in the economy.

The yuan has gained about 4.9 percent against the U.S. dollar so far this year.

Beijing burned through nearly $320 billion of reserves last year and the yuan still fell about 6.5 percent against the surging dollar, its biggest annual drop since 1994.

China has tightened rules on moving capital outside the country since late 2016 as it sought to support the yuan and stem a slide in its foreign exchange reserves.

The value of gold reserves fell to $75.238 billion at end-October, from $76.005 billion at end-September, data on the PBOC website also showed. (Reporting by Beijing Monitoring Desk; Editing by Sam Holmes)