Front Matter

Front Matter

International Monetary Fund. Statistics Dept.
Published Date:
October 2013
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©2013 International Monetary Fund

Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Joint Bank-Fund Library

International reserves and foreign currency liquidity : guidelines for a

data template – Washington, D.C. : International Monetary Fund,


p. : ill. ; cm.

Includes bibliographical references and index.

Note: “The update of the Guidelines was completed by staff of the IMF Statistics Department (STA).”

1. International liquidity. 2. Foreign exchange reserves. 3. Balance of

payments. I. International Monetary Fund. Statistics Dept. II. International Monetary Fund.

HG3893.I58 2013

ISBN: 9781484304228 (Paper)

ISBN: 9781484350164 (ePub)

ISBN: 9781484396179 (Mobi pocket)

ISBN: 9781484324318 (Web PDF)

Please send orders to:

International Monetary Fund, Publication Services

P.O. Box 92780, Washington, DC 20090, U.S.A.

Tel.: (202) 623-7430 Fax: (202) 623-7201





This book is an update of the International Reserves and Foreign Currency Liquidity: Guidelines for a Data Template (Guidelines) issued in 2001. It sets forth the underlying framework for the Data Template on International Reserves and Foreign Currency Liquidity (Reserves Data Template) and provides operational advice for its use. The update was needed to ensure consistency with the text of the sixth edition of the Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual (BPM6) and to take account of the 2009 revision to the Reserves Data Template by IMF Executive Board decision. In addition, some clarifications were needed to reflect IMF experience with countries that report data in the Reserves Data Template.

The updated version of the Guidelines includes three new appendices in addition to the five core chapters and five Appendices of the 2001 edition. The new Appendices are Reserve Assets and Currency Unions; Frequently Asked Questions on the Characteristics of Reserve Assets; and Statistical Treatment of Lending to the IMF, Lending to IMF Managed Trusts, and Special Drawing Rights. They are aimed at providing further clarifications on the methodology and data concepts used in the Reserves Data Template and, consequently, at assisting IMF member countries in reporting the required data.

The Reserves Data Template was jointly developed in 1999 by the IMF and a working group of the Committee on the Global Financial System (CGFS) of the Group of Ten central banks. The Reserves Data Template was modified in 2009 following approval by the IMF Executive Board on strengthening the effectiveness of Article VIII section (5) of the IMF’s Articles of Agreement. The Reserves Data 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 decision making in the public and private sectors, thereby helping to improve the transparency and functioning of global financial markets.

The public dissemination of the Reserves Data 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 Reserves Data Template with respect to the frequency and periodicity of reporting are described in Appendix 1.

Countries’ Reserves Data 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’ Reserves Data 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 update of the Guidelines was completed by staff of the IMF Statistics Department (STA). Robert Heath, Deputy Director, Ralph Kozlow, Division Chief of the Balance of Payments Division, and Florina Tanase, Deputy Division Chief, contributed substantially and oversaw work. Antonio Galicia-Escotto and Paul Austin, both senior economists in the Balance of Payments Division, were principally responsible for updating the Guidelines. Anbinh Phan and Esther George supported the preparation of the document. Anne Y. Kester was the primary author of the 2001 edition.

The update of the Guidelines was a consultative process with member countries and with other IMF departments. In this process, the Reserve Assets Technical Expert Group (RESTEG) played an important role. STA wishes to acknowledge, with thanks, the members listed below of the 2010 reconvened RESTEG:

Chair:Ralph Kozlow
Secretariat:Antonio Galicia-Escotto and Paul Austin

Mohammed Abdulkarim (Bahrain); Falmata Kpangni Gama (Chad); Denis Marionnet (Bank for International Settlements); Alexandre Pedrosa (Brazil); Carmen Picón Aguilar (European Central Bank); Ursula Schipper (Germany); Raymon Yuen (Hong Kong SAR, China); Mihály Durucskó (Hungary); Yoshiki Kokubo (Japan); Daisuke Takahashi (Japan); Dongwoo Kim (Korea); Julio Santaella (Mexico); Lydia N. Troshina (Russian Federation); NG Yi Ping (Singapore); Linda Motsumi (South Africa); Mala Mistry (United Kingdom); Charles Thomas (United States); Christian Mulder and Han van der Hoorn (IMF Monetary and Capital Markets Department); and Alison Stuart (IMF Strategy, Policy, and Review Department).

The updated version of the Guidelines also benefited from comments by national compilers and international agencies during the public comment periods on February 17–May 20, 2011 (Chapters 1 through 5) and August 8–September 7, 2011 (Appendices).

Within the IMF, we particularly thank Katharine Christopherson Puh, Bernhard Steinki, and Gabriela Rosenberg (Legal Department); Tetsuya Konuki and Nicolas Million (Strategy, Policy, and Review Department); Christian Mulder (Monetary and Capital Markets Department); and Sheila Bassett, Carlos Janada, and George Kabwe (Finance Department) for their contribution to the update.

Louis Marc Ducharme


Statistics Department

International Monetary Fund

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