Latvia has rebounded from the crisis, after successfully undertaking a difficult adjustment program. The recovery has been well balanced between external and domestic demand. The labor market is improving but unemployment is still high. Past consolidation efforts have brought down the fiscal deficit. The banking system is recovering. Nonresident deposits in the banking system have been expanding rapidly. Economic growth is expected to weaken slightly in 2013, before picking up later. Euro adoption in 2014 appears within reach, subject to some technical uncertainties.
This note documents and assesses the role of small financial centers in the international financial system using a newly-assembled dataset. It presents estimates of the foreign asset and liability positions for a number of the most important small financial centers, and places these into context by calculating the importance of these locations in the global aggregate of cross-border investment positions. It also reports some information on bilateral cross-border investment patterns, highlighting which countries engage in financial trade with small financial centers.
Partly reflecting structural advantages such a liquidity and strong investor protection, foreigners have built up extremely large positions in U.S. (as well as other dollar-denominated) financial assets. This paper describes the impact on global wealth of an unanticipated shock to U.S. financial markets. For every 10 percent decline in the dollar, U.S. equity markets, and U.S. bond markets, total wealth losses to foreigners could amount to about 5 percentage points of foreign GDP. Four stylized facts emerge: (i) foreign countries, particularly emerging markets, are more exposed to U.S. bonds than U.S. equities; (ii) U.S. exposure has increased for most countries; (iii) on average, U.S. asset holdings of developed countries and emerging markets (scaled by GDP) are very similar; and (iv) based on their reserve positions, wealth losses of emerging market governments could, on average, amount to about 2¾ percentage points of their GDP.
The coordinated Portfolio Investment Survey Guide is provided to assist balance of payments compilers in the conduct of an internationally coordinated survey of security holdings being conducted under the auspices of the IMF with reference to year-end 1997. The Guide has two main purposes: to set out the objectives of the Coordinated Survey; and to provide practical advice on how to prepare, organize, and conduct a national survey. The appendices include three model survey forms, a glossary of security terms, a listing of the major security databases that national compilers may find useful in their work, and a method for reconciling security position and transactions data.