Front Matter

Front Matter

International Monetary Fund
Published Date:
January 1991
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© 1991 International Monetary Fund

ISBN 1-55775-218-4

ISSN 0258-7440

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The following symbols have been used throughout this paper:

… to indicate that data are not available:

— to indicate that the figure is zero or less than half the final digit shown, or that the item does not exist:

- between years or months (e.g., 1990–91 or January-June) to indicate the years or months covered, including the beginning and ending years or months:

/ between years (e.g., 1990/91) to indicate a crop or fiscal (financial) year.

“Billion” means a thousand million.

Minor discrepancies between constituent figures and totals are due to rounding.

The term “country” used in this study does not in all cases refer to a territorial entity that is a state as understood by international law and practice. The term also covers some territorial entities that are not states, but for which statistical data are maintained and provided internationally on a separate and independent basis.


This study was prepared under the direction of Alessandro Leipold, Advisor in the Exchange and Trade Relations Department of the International Monetary Fund, with Donald Mathieson, Chief of the Financial Studies Division of the Research Department. The co-authors, staff members from both departments, are listed on the title page.

Background for the study was provided in part by informal discussions with commercial and investment banks, securities houses, stock and futures exchanges, regulatory and monetary authorities, and the staffs of the Bank for International Settlements, the Commission of the European Communities, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the World Bank, the International Finance Corporation, and the Japan Center for International Finance. The discussions took place in Amsterdam, Basle, Bonn, Brussels, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, London, New York, Ottawa, Paris, Tokyo, Toronto, Washington, and Zurich at various times between September and early December 1990.

In addition to the authors, other Fund staff members taking part in some of the discussions or making contributions to the study at various stages included C. Maxwell Watson and Charles Collyns (of the Exchange and Trade Relations Department). Staff of the Bureau of Statistics, particularly Richard Stillson and Robert Di Calogero, developed and compiled the data based on the Fund’s international banking statistics. Research assistance was provided by Can Demir and Rosa Vera-Bunge. Louis Pauly prepared the text for publication. Delrene Alvis, Gail Campbell, Sheila O’Connor, Margaret Tan, and Nora Whitehouse patiently typed and retyped the text and tables. Juanita Roushdy, of the External Relations Department, gave the manuscript a final edit and efficiently coordinated the production.

The study benefited from comments by staff in other departments of the Fund and by members of the Executive Board. Opinions expressed, however, are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Fund or of the Executive Directors. Similar studies on international capital markets have been prepared in recent years; the previous study was published in April 1990 in the World Economic and Financial Surveys series. The present study was completed in February 1991 and reflects developments to that time.

The country classification used throughout this report is that of the October 1990 World Economic Outlook. In particular, the developing country category does not include certain Eastern European (Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia), African (Angola, Namibia), and Asian (Mongolia) countries nor the U.S.S.R. A new country classification is set out in the May 1991 World Economic Outlook.

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