5232.0.55.004 - Information paper: Product changes to the Financial Accounts: Finance and Wealth, 2014  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 25/09/2014  First Issue
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INTRODUCTION

This information paper describes the upcoming changes to the product Australian National Accounts: Financial Accounts (cat. no. 5232.0). The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has developed a more complete set of quarterly institutional sector accounts. Commencing September quarter 2014, the Financial Accounts will expand to include institutional sector capital accounts. As a result, the title of the publication will change to Australian National Accounts: Finance and Wealth (cat. no. 5232.0). This paper discusses the key changes to this product including:

  • the main data inclusions;
  • the impact on the presentation of statistics, and
  • the structural impact on time series spreadsheets.

The first issue of Australian National Accounts: Finance and Wealth, [Formerly: Australian National Accounts: Financial Accounts] (cat. no. 5232.0) will be the September quarter 2014, scheduled for release on Thursday 18th December 2014.

This information paper includes previews of the new time series spreadsheets to be published in December 2014.


BACKGROUND

The ABS presents statistics on the Australian System of National Accounts (ASNA) providing a systematic statistical framework for summarising and analysing economic events, the wealth of an economy, and its components. The ASNA is compiled in accordance with international standards and forms a body of statistics that incorporates a wide range of information including national income, expenditure and product, the financial accounts, balance sheet statistics and more.

The ABS currently produces annual sectoral income and capital accounts that appear in the Australian System of National Accounts (cat. no. 5204.0). In September quarter 2014 the ABS will release a full set of institutional sector income accounts in the Australian National Accounts: National Income, Expenditure and Product (cat. no. 5206.0). These will be accompanied by an expanded and improved set of capital accounts in the Australian National Accounts: Finance and Wealth (cat. no. 5232.0). The publication of quarterly income and capital accounts will complete the transaction accounts in the ASNA on a quarterly basis. This information will allow users to undertake more timely analysis of the balancing items of the income account (net saving), the capital account (net lending/borrowing) and the financial account (change in financial position). It will better inform users on the transmission of economic shocks, in particular, the linkages between the 'real' and financial economies.

The product changes affecting the Financial Accounts publication are a result of work undertaken within the ABS to respond to user requirements. The international statistics community and National Accounts users have identified the need for the provision of high quality, and timely sectoral net saving and investment data. The production of these accounts will address some of the critical macro-economic data gaps articulated by the International Monetary Fund and Financial Stability Board in their report to the G-20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Central Bank Governors.1 The report identified 20 recommendations aimed at improving economic and financial statistics. Recommendation #15 in particular, identified various desired improvements to the breadth of sectoral statistics published by individual countries.

Footnotes

1. International Monetary Fund and Financial Stability Board, 2009, Financial Crisis and Information Gaps. Last viewed 29 August 2014, <www.imf.org>.