Front Matter

Front Matter

Anne Kester
Published Date:
October 2001
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    © 2001 International Monetary Fund

    Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

    Kester, Anne Y.

    International reserves and foreign currency liquidity: guidelines for a data template / Anne Y. Kester.

    p. cm.

    Includes index.

    ISBN 9781589060586

    1. International liquidity. 2. Foreign exchange. 3. Balance of payments. I. Title.

    HG3893 .K47 2001



    Price: $23.00

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    This book sets forth the underlying framework for the data template on international reserves and foreign currency liquidity and provides operational guidelines for its use. Chapter 1 provides an overview of the genesis of the template and outlines its structure and key features. The chapter is primarily intended for readers seeking a general understanding of the template. The later chapters and the appendices are designed to facilitate compilation of the template by data providers, and are more technical in nature.

    This work replaces the provisional Operational Guidelines for the Data Template on International Reserves and Foreign Currency Liquidity issued in October 1999. At that time, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) invited comments from users with a view to providing a final version of the Operational Guidelines in 2001, which now appear as this important volume. Users generally were supportive of the October 1999 document, and many cited the importance of the framework for promoting data transparency. For this reason, this final version does not depart significantly from the provisional version of October 1999. The main changes from the provisional version are refinements to aid clarity of exposition. This document also includes an additional appendix (Appendix V) that describes how countries can report the template data to the IMF for dissemination on the IMF’s website.

    The IMF and a working group of the Committee on the Global Financial System (CGFS) of the Group of Ten central banks jointly developed the template in 1999. The template is innovative in that it integrates data on balance-sheet and off-balance-sheet international financial activities of country authorities and supplementary information. It aims to provide a comprehensive account of countries’ official foreign currency assets and drains on such resources arising from various foreign currency liabilities and commitments of the authorities. The public disclosure of such information by countries on a timely and accurate basis promotes informed decisionmaking in the public and private sectors, thereby helping to improve the functioning of global financial markets.

    The template is a prescribed category of the IMF’s Special Data Dissemination Standard (SDDS), which the IMF established in 1996. The SDDS, to which countries may subscribe on a voluntary basis, provides a standard for good practices in the dissemination of economic and financial data. The SDDS requirements of the template with respect to the frequency and periodicity of reporting are described in Appendix I.

    Countries’ template data can be found on the websites of their central banks or finance ministries. The data are also accessible on the IMF’s website at The IMF website redisseminates countries’ template data in a common format and in a common currency to facilitate users’ access to the information and to promote data comparability across countries.

    The guidelines set forth in this volume clarify data concepts, definitions, and classifications and discuss ways to disclose the requisite data in the template. In developing the guidelines, the IMF staff consulted with IMF member countries, the CGFS, the European Central Bank (ECB), and other institutions. The IMF is grateful for their comments and suggestions.

    Within the IMF, we are indebted to our colleagues for their review of this document, in particular those at the Policy Development and Review Department for their insights and observations. We particularly thank Anne Y. Kester of the Statistics Department for her unstinting efforts in drafting the operational guidelines and contributing to the development of the data template. Thanks go also to Sean M. Culhane of the External Relations Department for managing the production of these guidelines.

    Carol S. Carson, Director

    Statistics Department

    International Monetary Fund

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