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 Local News  >  BUSINESS
Posted: Sunday 2 August, 2009 at 11:27 AM

IMF launches new online database of Financial Soundness Indicators

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Press Release
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    The International Monetary Fund (IMF) launched a new website today which will allow public access to an expanding database of indicators of financial sector soundness for member countries. 

    The database aims at supporting macro-prudential analysis and thus financial sector surveillance. The initiative is one of the steps the IMF is taking to increase the transparency of financial systems, which helps in the strengthening of market discipline, with positive effects on financial stability.

    The disseminated financial soundness indicators (FSIs), ranging from regulatory capital adequacy ratios to real estate prices, can assist in analyzing the soundness of financial institutions as a sector as well as in assessing the conditions of the counterpart corporate and household sectors of relevant markets. FSIs complement other assessments of soundness such as early warning indicators and macroeconomic vulnerability exercises.

    The site,
    http://fsi.imf.org/, is linked to a database holding FSI data from more than 25 countries, a number which is expected to increase as the database is expanded and more countries contribute data on a voluntary basis. The list of FSIs and the methodology of their compilation were developed over a number of years by IMF staff in close consultation with a group of experts from other international institutions and IMF member countries.

    Most contributing countries have submitted all 12 core FSIs relating to deposit-taking institutions (i.e. banks), and many have supplied some of the 28 additional indicators that members are encouraged to submit relating to deposit-taking institutions, other financial corporations, non-financial corporations, households, market liquidity and real estate markets. It is envisaged that the list of indicators will be refined and broadened over time and, ultimately, that the database will be used in the compilation of the IMF’s Global Financial Stability Report (GFSR), once sufficient depth of data has been established.

    Countries may choose to contribute monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, or annual FSIs. In addition to numerical information, the FSI database includes metadata. The extensive metadata provided by countries are intended to provide information about the national practices that govern the compilation of FSIs, which can vary significantly from country to country. 

    The metadata are therefore seen as essential to understanding the data and the extent of data comparability, helping to avoid inappropriate interpretations of FSIs and comparisons of FSI data compiled using different methodologies. 

    The data can be searched and sorted, using criteria chosen by the user from the rich set of metadata categories. This permits the retrieval of data that are comparable across countries, and/or across time, for the chosen metadata categories.

     

     

     

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