Bilateral exchange rates (ert_bil)

Reference Metadata in Euro SDMX Metadata Structure (ESMS)

Compiling agency: Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union

Eurostat metadata
Reference metadata
1. Contact
2. Metadata update
3. Statistical presentation
4. Unit of measure
5. Reference Period
6. Institutional Mandate
7. Confidentiality
8. Release policy
9. Frequency of dissemination
10. Accessibility and clarity
11. Quality management
12. Relevance
13. Accuracy
14. Timeliness and punctuality
15. Coherence and comparability
16. Cost and Burden
17. Data revision
18. Statistical processing
19. Comment
Related Metadata
Annexes (including footnotes)

For any question on data and metadata, please contact: EUROPEAN STATISTICAL DATA SUPPORT


1. Contact Top
1.1. Contact organisation

Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union

1.2. Contact organisation unit

Unit C2: National accounts - production

1.5. Contact mail address

5, Rue Alphonse Weicker, 2721 Luxembourg

2. Metadata update Top
2.1. Metadata last certified 26/07/2018
2.2. Metadata last posted 26/07/2018
2.3. Metadata last update 16/04/2019

3. Statistical presentation Top
3.1. Data description

The presented data comprise exchange rates against the euro (from 1 January 1999), and against the ECU (up to 31 December 1998): average and end of the period rates.

3.2. Classification system

The ECB applies the following rules for the euro reference rates:

  1. The reference rates are usually updated by 15:00 CET on every working day, except on TARGET closing days. They are based on a regular daily concertation procedure between central banks across Europe and worldwide, which normally takes place at 14:15 CET. They are then published on the ECB's website.
  2. Only one reference exchange rate (i.e. the mid-rate) is published for each currency, using the "certain" method (i.e. 1 euro = x foreign currency units).
  3. The number of significant digits used may vary between the currencies, reflecting market conventions. However, in most cases five significant digits are used.
  4. The euro area national central banks may publish more comprehensive lists of euro reference exchange rates than that published by the ECB.

The ECU rates as calculated by the European Commission always have six significant digits. 

3.3. Coverage - sector

Not applicable

3.4. Statistical concepts and definitions

The ECU, a basket of EU currencies, was replaced by the euro at a rate of 1 : 1 on 1 January 1999. From that date, the currencies of the euro-area became sub-divisions of the euro at irrevocably fixed rates of conversion.

It should be pointed out that prior to 1979 the exchange rates refer to the European Unit of Account (EUA) and not the ECU. However, the ECU's value and composition when it was introduced, was identical to that of the EUA. The EUA officially came into existence on 28th June 1974, when it was equal to 1 SDR (Special Drawing Right).

The euro exchange rate series are mostly reference rates published by the ECB. However, the exchange rates for Albania, North Macedonia, and Serbia are provided by the respective national central bank. The exchange rate of Bosnia and Herzegovina is fixed against the euro. Montenegro and Kosovo, not shown in the table, both use the euro as their currency.

As from 1 January 2005 the currency of Turkey is the new Turkish lira (TRY). 1 TRY equals 1,000,000 Turkish liras (TRL).

As from 1 July 2005 the currency of Romania is the new Romanian leu (RON). 1 RON equals 10,000 old Romanian lei (ROL).

3.5. Statistical unit

Not applicable

3.6. Statistical population

Not applicable

3.7. Reference area

Non euro-area European Union member states, EFTA countries, EU enlargement countries, other countries.

3.8. Coverage - Time

Exchange rates against the Euro/ECU: Daily rates are available for the ECU from 1 July 1974 to 31 December 1998 and EUR from 4 January 1999, against a large number of currencies. However, monthly average series starts in January 1971: from that date until June 1974 these are theoretical EUA rates based on the EUA basket.

3.9. Base period

Not applicable.

4. Unit of measure Top

Units of ECU/euro and national currency

5. Reference Period Top

Generally, the period average data are the average of the business day rates. The period end rate is the daily rate of the last business day of the period. However, the daily series for Iceland until end-2008 include weekends. The period averages for the Macedonian denar differ from those published by the national central bank, as the latter include weekends and public holidays.

From January 1971 until June 1974 the monthly average series are theoretical rates based on the EUA currency basket. The rates vary according to changes in the market value of the component currencies. The annual averages for 1971-74 are an average of the 12 monthly rates.

6. Institutional Mandate Top
6.1. Institutional Mandate - legal acts and other agreements

Council Regulation (EC) No 1478/2000 of 19 June 2000 amending Regulation (EC) No 2866/98 on the conversion rates between the euro and the currencies of the Member States adopting the euro.

6.2. Institutional Mandate - data sharing

Not applicable

7. Confidentiality Top
7.1. Confidentiality - policy

Regulation (EC) No 223/2009 on European statistics (recital 24 and Article 20(4)) of 11 March 2009 (OJ L 87, p. 164), stipulates the need to establish common principles and guidelines ensuring the confidentiality of data used for the production of European statistics and the access to those confidential data with due account for technical developments and the requirements of users in a democratic society.

7.2. Confidentiality - data treatment

Not applicable

8. Release policy Top
8.1. Release calendar

Not applicable.

8.2. Release calendar access

Not applicable

8.3. Release policy - user access

In line with the Community legal framework and the European Statistics Code of Practice Eurostat disseminates European statistics on Eurostat's website (see item 10 - 'Accessibility and clarity') respecting professional independence and in an objective, professional and transparent manner in which all users are treated equitably. The detailed arrangements are governed by the Eurostat protocol on impartial access to Eurostat data for users.

9. Frequency of dissemination Top

Daily, monthly, quarterly and annually.

10. Accessibility and clarity Top
10.1. Dissemination format - News release

News releases on-line

10.2. Dissemination format - Publications


10.3. Dissemination format - online database

Please consult free data on-line or refer to contact details. 

10.4. Dissemination format - microdata access

Not applicable

10.5. Dissemination format - other

PEEIs page on Eurostat website. See also

10.6. Documentation on methodology

Data for the Euro foreign exchange reference rates are compiled by the European Central Bank. Documentation on methodology is available from the ECB.

10.7. Quality management - documentation


11. Quality management Top
11.1. Quality assurance

Not available

11.2. Quality management - assessment

ECB official exchange rates are subject to a common collection process.

12. Relevance Top
12.1. Relevance - User Needs

The bilateral exchange rates of the euro are used by the public at large.

Other statistical domains use the bilateral exchange rates for compiling European and EU aggregates.  

12.2. Relevance - User Satisfaction

Not available

12.3. Completeness

Daily data since 2001 for almost all the countries. Data covers only periods with convertible currencies.

13. Accuracy Top
13.1. Accuracy - overall

Exchange rates are not revised.

13.2. Sampling error

Not applicable

13.3. Non-sampling error

Not applicable

14. Timeliness and punctuality Top
14.1. Timeliness

The exchange rates provided by the ECB are updated every business day and generally published within 2 days (t+2). For Albania and North Macedonia the exchange rates are available within a week from the end of the month. For Serbia the exchange rates are available around two weeks from the end of the month.

14.2. Punctuality

Very good

15. Coherence and comparability Top
15.1. Comparability - geographical

Full comparability for most currencies

15.2. Comparability - over time

Full comparability for most of the time series

15.3. Coherence - cross domain

Not applicable

15.4. Coherence - internal

Not applicable

16. Cost and Burden Top

Only the European Central Bank and national central banks are involved in the data collection. There are no other reporting agents.

17. Data revision Top
17.1. Data revision - policy

Revisions do not take place. Errors are extremely rare and would be corrected immediately.

17.2. Data revision - practice

Not applicable

18. Statistical processing Top
18.1. Source data

Data are taken from the European system of central banks or other natonal central banks. Until 31 December 1998 these exchange rates refer to the ECU and the source was the European Commission.

18.2. Frequency of data collection

Daily, monthly, quarterly, yearly.

18.3. Data collection

File transmissions by the ECB and national central banks.

18.4. Data validation

Data may be checked with the ECB, the NCB or the European Commission.

18.5. Data compilation

Not applicable

18.6. Adjustment

Not applicable

19. Comment Top

In order to derive a continuous time series in a former national currency from the relevant series in ECU/euro, the data in euro should be converted at the fixed conversion rate for the period after the adoption of the euro.

Related metadata Top
ert_bil_conv_esms - Conversion factors for euro fixed series into euro/ECU

Annexes Top