5232.0.55.005 - Information paper: Product changes to the Australian National Accounts: Finance and Wealth , 2019  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 03/10/2019  First Issue
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Summary of changes

Introduction

The purpose of this paper is to inform users of changes to the September Quarter 2019 issue of Australian National Accounts: Finance and Wealth (cat. no. 5232.0), scheduled for release on the 19th of December 2019.

The paper will focus on:

  • changes due to the implementation of the new Economic and Financial Statistics (EFS) collection
  • removal of the distinction between banks and non-bank Authorised Deposit-taking Institutions (ADIs)
  • coherence between the new EFS collection and the ABS Survey of International Investment (SII)
  • inclusion of a balance sheet for self-managed superannuation funds (subset of the pension fund sector)
  • a preview (in the Downloads tab) of the time series spreadsheet format including the series identifiers.


The Economic and Financial Statistics (EFS) modernisation program

As part of its role, the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) collects data from financial institutions for the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA). Some of the forms used to collect data from banks and Registered Financial Corporations (RFCs) have not been updated since they were first introduced in 2002. Over the past few years, APRA, the ABS, the RBA and industry have worked together to modernise the collection. The new set of forms and related guidance is called the Economic and Financial Statistics (EFS) collection. The forms are used to collect data from ADIs and RFCs.

The new collection will significantly improve the alignment of the EFS statistics with current Australian System of National Accounts (ASNA) requirements. The old APRA collection’s concepts, statistical units and disaggregation did not always align with detailed ASNA requirements for the Australian National Accounts: Finance and Wealth publication. The degree of alignment varied depending on the concept being measured, the consolidation basis on which it was reported, and the level of disaggregation within a reported concept. As a result, data sourced from the old APRA collection was subject to data modelling, adjustment and the substitution of data from other sources. One example is when the System of National Accounts (SNA) - the internationally agreed standard set of recommendations on how to compile measures of economic activity - was updated in 2008. When the ABS implemented the 2008 SNA statistical framework into the Australian National Accounts: Finance and Wealth publication in 2009, this materially increased the amount of modelling, adjustments and data substitution required. The new EFS collection has provided an opportunity to review and reduce the number of models and adjustments applied to align with the 2008 SNA framework and other ASNA requirements.

While data sourced from the EFS collection do not alter the ASNA conceptual framework, the new data provide improved measurement of existing concepts. Where the EFS data results in a shift in the level from the old APRA data, the level shifts will be backcast to June quarter 2002, that is, there will be no series breaks in the published time series.

This publication will include data collected on the following Phase 1 EFS forms:
  • Statement of Financial Position - (ARF_720_0)
  • Loans and Finance Leases - (ARF_720_1)
  • Deposits - (ARF_720_2)
  • Intra-group Assets & Liabilities - (ARF_720_3)
  • Debt Securities Held - (ARF_720_4)
  • Equity Securities Held - (ARF_720_5)
  • Securities on Issue - (ARF_720_6)
  • Bill Acceptances and Endorsements - (ARF_720_7).


Discussion of the main EFS changes

The new EFS collection will provide better quality data which is aligned with current statistical classifications and standards. For example, EFS:
  • aligns counterparty sectoral breakdowns with the Standard Economic Sector Classifications of Australia (SESCA), 2008
  • provides much more detailed guidance for reporting entities, so that institutions can provide consistent data
  • provides updated practical definitions of residency for both institutional units and financial instruments - this means some loans and deposits currently attributed to the household sector may be recoded as investment balances with the rest of the world
  • requires the reporting of loans by purpose (for example, to buy a house) rather than product - as a result, we expect to see a shift from owner occupied housing to personal loans
  • removes the distinction between Banks and Non-bank ADIs, for the reasons explained below.


Removal of the distinction between Bank and Non-bank ADIs

On 5 May 2018, changes to section 66 of the Banking Act 1959 (the Banking Act), made as part of the Treasury Laws Amendment (Banking Measures No. 1) Act 2018 (TLAB), took effect. From that date, ADIs were permitted to use the word ‘bank’ without restriction under the Banking Act.

The old APRA collection made distinctions between bank and non-bank ADIs for reporting purposes. With the changes to section 66, this distinction was removed from the new EFS collection.

In line with this, changes have been made to the subsectors of the Depository Corporations Sector in this publication:
  • The ‘Banks’ subsector will be renamed ‘Authorised Deposit taking Institutions’ and will now include ‘Banks’ and ‘non-bank ADIs’
  • The ‘Other Depository Corporations’ sub-sector will be renamed ‘Other Broad Money Institutions’ and will exclude ‘non-bank ADIs’.

The impact of the reclassification will largely be seen as a redistribution of financial assets and liabilities between the two subsectors within the ‘Depository Corporations’ sector. Where the ‘Depository Corporations’ sector financial assets and liabilities are revised this will have been driven by improved measurement from EFS rather than the impact of the reclassification.


Coherence with the ABS Survey of International Investment

The EFS project included multiple ‘parallel runs’ (where APRA collected data from the new EFS collection and the ABS analysed the new data while continuing to collect and publish data on the current basis) to assess the new data ahead of its release. As part of the parallel run process where the limited overlap existed, the data from the EFS collection for ADIs and RFCs interaction with non-residents were reconciled with data from the ABS Survey of International Investment (SII) used in the ABS publication Balance of Payments and International Investment Position (cat. no. 5302.0). This process provided additional quality assurance whereby the ABS worked with data providers to resolve any significant reporting issues. The result of this process has no implication for the ABS SII now or going forward. The ABS SII is the key statistical input for estimates of Australia's financial interaction with non-residents in this publication.


Self-Managed Superannuation Balance Sheets

From the September quarter issue, the Australian National Accounts: Finance and Wealth publication will include an additional table which explicitly presents the balance sheet of self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs). The pension fund table will continue to include the total pension fund balance sheet for APRA regulated funds, public sector funds and SMSFs.