China's central bank said Saturday that its foreign exchange reserves rose 16 percent year-on-year to $1.9537 trillion by the end of March. China's reserves, already the world's largest, increased by $7.7 billion in the first quarter - $146.2 billion less than the same period last year, the People's Bank of China said in a notice on its Web site. That rise was substantially less than the fourth quarter increase of almost $45 billion, according to China's official Xinhua News Agency, showing the impact of slowing exports due to the financial crisis. In March, the reserves increased by $41.7 billion, it said, $6.7 billion more than the same period last year. Analysts believe China holds up to 70 percent of its foreign reserves in US dollar-denominated assets, including Treasury securities.