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The production of the Handbook on Securities Statistics (the Handbook) is a joint undertaking by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), the European Central Bank (ECB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which have specific interests and expertise in the area of securities statistics and are the core members of the Working Group on Securities Databases (WGSD).
The institutions sponsoring the Handbook are responding to demand from various international groups for the development of methodological standards for securities statistics. In November 2009 the report “The Financial Crisis and Information Gaps”, which was prepared by the Financial Stability Board Secretariat and IMF staff at the request of the G20 finance ministers and central bank governors, endorsed the development of the Handbook, as well as the gradual implementation of improved statistics on issuance and holdings of securities at the national and international level. The BIS’s compilation of data on debt securities plays an important role as regards the latter.
Part 1 of the Handbook was published in May 2009, and Part 2 was published in September 2010.
These deal with statistics on debt securities issuance and debt securities holdings, respectively. Both provide a conceptual framework for position and flow statistics on debt securities. Part 3 of the Handbook concerns statistics on equity securities and the methodology described is based on the System of National Accounts 2008 (2008 SNA) and the sixth edition of the Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual (BPM6). It also goes slightly beyond the confines of these standards by addressing additional issues such as the main features of equity securities, special and borderline cases, and breakdowns of issuance and holdings of equity securities by counterparty.
Special attention is also paid to specific operations such as mergers and acquisitions, restructuring, privatisation and nationalisation, and transactions between general government and public corporations.
As in Parts 1 and 2 of the Handbook, the conceptual framework is complemented by tables presenting data at both aggregated and disaggregated levels. This should allow sufficient flexibility in the presentation of data on issuance and holdings of equity securities, in line with developments in equity securities markets and investor behaviour.
The following officials in the sponsoring organisations are the most heavily involved in the activities of the WGSD and have played a key role in the preparation of Part 3 of the Handbook