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International Monetary Fund. Statistics Dept.
This Technical Assistance Report discusses the findings and recommendations of the IMF mission regarding compilation of Government Finance Statistics in Bosnia and Herzegovina as per the Government Finance Statistics Manual 2014 and the European System of National and Regional Accounts 2010. On the compilation of Excessive Deficit Procedure (EDP) tables, the mission assisted the Central Bank of Bosnia and Herzegovina with the completion of derivation tables for net lending / net borrowing of the budgetary governments of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Republic of Srpska. The mission also recommended implementing a coding system for statistical adjustments to the source data; applying the superdividend test; and further implementing derivation tables for the compilation of EDP tables.
Federico Diaz Kalan, Ms. Adina Popescu, and Julien Reynaud
There is evidence that fiscal rules, in particular well-designed rules, are associated with lower sovereign spreads. However, the impact of noncompliance with fiscal rules on spreads has not been examined in the literature. This paper estimates the effect of the Excessive Deficit Procedure (EDP) on sovereign spreads of European Union member states. Based on a sample including the 28 European Union countries over the period 1999 to 2016, sovereign spreads of countries placed under an EDP are found to be on average higher compared to countries that are not under an EDP. The interpretation of this result is not straight-forward as different channels may be at play, in particular those related with the credibility and the design of the EU fiscal framework. The specification accounts for typical macroeconomic, fiscal, and financial determinants of sovereign spreads, the System Generalized Method of Moments estimator is used to control for endogeneity, and results are robust to a range of checks on variables and estimators.
International Monetary Fund. Statistics Dept.
This Technical Assistance Report assesses the current government finance statistics compilation environment in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), particularly the classification of institutional units and debt data compilation based on the Government Finance Statistics Manual and European System of National and Regional Accounts frameworks. It was found that a full list of public sector units in BiH does not currently exist. The Central Bank of Bosnia and Herzegovina (CBBH) is in a good starting position to compile the public sector debt data. The results of its work on financial balance sheets should enable the CBBH to produce general government debt data in a relatively short term.
International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

KEY ISSUES Backed by sound policies, economic performance since the 2013 Article IV Consultation has been positive. In response to fiscal stimuli and credit recovery, growth is picking up from the low levels that followed the credit-boom-and-bust-cycle. Careful central bank policies kept inflation low and the financial sector stable, despite shilling volatility. Lower export demand and high infrastructure-related imports widened the current account deficit, but reserves and debt remain at comfortable levels. Performance under the PSI is on track. All end-December 2014 quantitative assessment criteria and most indicative targets and structural benchmarks were met. Key highlights include an exceptionally strong revenue performance and progress in public financial management. The inflation targeting mechanism triggered consultations with staff as average core inflation fell below the inner limit of the band. Risks to the program stem from the upcoming election, regional unrest, and capacity constraints. The envisaged policy mix should achieve further economic gains in the fiscal year starting in July. Despite the election, the authorities are committed to keeping fiscal policy within a budget that favors large infrastructure investment and sustains tax revenue collections in the context of low inflation. They also intend to closely oversee the spillovers and feedback loops between the real economy and the financial sector.1 The planned oil production, infrastructure upgrades, and regional integration bring encouraging medium-term prospects for growth and employment. The strategy will be supported by foreign direct investment; enhanced domestic revenue mobilization through additional tax collection and efforts to improve access to bank services; and increased borrowing at non-concessional but favorable terms. Staff recommends conclusion of the 2015 Article IV Consultation and supports the authorities’ request to complete the fourth PSI review. It also supports the authorities’ decision to modify two end-June 2015 ACs and to increase the continuous ceiling on the contracting or guaranteeing of new nonconcessional debt.

International Monetary Fund

The European Union’s (EU) financial stability framework is being markedly strengthened. This is taking place on the heels of a severe financial crisis owing to weaknesses in the banking system interrelated with sovereign difficulties in the euro area periphery. Important progress has been made in designing an institutional framework to secure microeconomic and macroprudential supervision at the EU level, but this new set-up faces a number of challenges. Developments regarding the financial stability may assist in the continuing evolution of the European financial stability architecture.

Mr. Michael Weber and Ms. Michaela Denk
International organizations collect data from national authorities to create multivariate cross-sectional time series for their analyses. As data from countries with not yet well-established statistical systems may be incomplete, the bridging of data gaps is a crucial challenge. This paper investigates data structures and missing data patterns in the cross-sectional time series framework, reviews missing value imputation techniques used for micro data in official statistics, and discusses their applicability to cross-sectional time series. It presents statistical methods and quality indicators that enable the (comparative) evaluation of imputation processes and completed datasets.
Mr. Gonzalo C Pastor Campos
This paper analyzes the effectiveness of technical assistance provided by AFRITAC West (AFW) in the area of national accounts using the Fund's Technical Assistance Information Management System (TAIMS). The challenge has been to report on "ultimate outcomes" (i.e., the production and dissemination of national accounts statistics along best international practices) rather than on "inputs" (i.e., the number of national accounts missions fielded by AFW), as it has been the case to date. The paper concludes that the "ultimate outcome" of producing and disseminating robust national accounts is work in progress, with AFW's technical assistance efforts mainly focusing on source data assessments and methodological issues underpinning the compilation of national accounts. The pending challenge is to further support a more timely production and dissemination of national accounts data, as recommended in the Data ROSCs and by the IMF mission teams to AFW member countries.
Nazim Belhocine
This paper constructs a data set to document firms' expenditures on an identifiable list of intangible items and examines the implications of treating intangible spending as an acquisition of final (investment) goods on GDP growth for Canada. It finds that investment in intangible capital by 2002 is almost as large as the investment in physical capital. This result is in line with similar findings for the U.S. and the U.K. Furthermore, the growth in GDP and labor productivity may be underestimated by as much as 0.1 percentage point per year during this same period.
Martin Feldkircher and Stefan Zeugner
Default prior choices fixing Zellner's g are predominant in the Bayesian Model Averaging literature, but tend to concentrate posterior mass on a tiny set of models. The paper demonstrates this supermodel effect and proposes to address it by a hyper-g prior, whose data-dependent shrinkage adapts posterior model distributions to data quality. Analytically, existing work on the hyper-g-prior is complemented by posterior expressions essential to fully Bayesian analysis and to sound numerical implementation. A simulation experiment illustrates the implications for posterior inference. Furthermore, an application to determinants of economic growth identifies several covariates whose robustness differs considerably from previous results.