In the HTR system, there is a large difference in temperature between different parts of the reactor core. The softer neutron spectrum in the upper colder core regions tends to shift the power productions in the fresh fuel upwards. As uranium 235 depletes and plutonium with its higher cross sections in the lower hot regions is built-up, an axial power flattening takes place. These effects have been studied in detail for a single column in an equilibrium environment. The aim of this paper is to relate these findings to a whole reactor core and to investigate the influence of axial temperatures on the overall performance and in particular, the fuel management scheme chosen for the reference design. A further objective has been to calculate the reactivity requirements for different part load conditions and for various daily and weekly load diagrams. As the xenon cross section changes significantly with temperature these investigations are performed for an equilibrium core with due representation of axial temperature zones.