Maastricht criterion interest rates (irt_lt_mcby)

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

2920 Luxembourg LUXEMBOURG

2. Metadata update Top
2.1. Metadata last certified 14/06/2021
2.2. Metadata last posted 14/06/2021
2.3. Metadata last update 14/06/2021

3. Statistical presentation Top
3.1. Data description

Maastricht criterion bond yields (mcby) are long-term interest rates, used as a convergence criterion for the European Monetary Union, based on the Maastricht Treaty.

3.2. Classification system

The definition of long-term interest rates to be used in the convergence criteria for EMU was agreed between the European Commission and European Central Bank. 

3.3. Coverage - sector

Central government.

3.4. Statistical concepts and definitions

The Maastricht Treaty EMU convergence criterion series relates to interest rates for long-term government bonds denominated in national currencies. Selection guidelines require data to be based on central government bond yields on the secondary market, gross of tax, with a residual maturity of around 10 years. The bond or the bonds of the basket have to be replaced regularly to avoid any maturity drift.

The legal basis is the Article 121 of the Treaty establishing the European Community and Protocol on the convergence criteria.

Harmonised series and indicators

At present, harmonised long-term interest rates are available for all Member States

A harmonised long-term interest rate for Luxembourg is presented starting mid-May 2010. Before, the Luxembourg Government did not have outstanding long-term debt securities with a residual maturity of close to ten years. Therefore, the yield on long-term bond(s) issued by a private credit institution with a residual maturity close to 10 years is presented for the period up to mid-May 2010 and is thus not fully harmonised for that period.

For Cyprus, primary market yields are reported up to April 2015. The same applies to Bulgaria nad Romania up to December 2005, Slovenia up to October 2003 and Lithuania up to October 2007. For Greece, no data are available for July 2015 owing to market closure.

3.5. Statistical unit

Not applicable.

3.6. Statistical population

Not applicable.

3.7. Reference area

Euro area and EU aggregates, Member States and UK.

3.8. Coverage - Time

Length of series varies considerably. In general the national series for Member States joining the EU before 2004 are much longer than for the Member States joining 2004 or later. The lengthiest series for daily Maastricht criterion bond yields on 1 January 1980.

3.9. Base period

Not applicable.

4. Unit of measure Top

All the yields are expressed in percentages per annum.

5. Reference Period Top

Data show daily, monthly, quarterly and annual values.

The length of series varies according to country.

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

The legal basis is the Article 121 of the Treaty establishing the European Community and Protocol on the convergence criteria.

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

The precise date of data release for the Maastricht criteria bond yields is disseminated on the Eurostat and ECB websites.

8.2. Release calendar access


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 annual.

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

News releases on-line.

10.2. Dissemination format - Publications

Not applicable.

10.3. Dissemination format - online database

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

10.4. Dissemination format - microdata access

Not applicable.

10.5. Dissemination format - other


10.6. Documentation on methodology

Details of the selection criteria for the EMU convergence series, including the yield formula used may be obtained from ECB.

10.7. Quality management - documentation

Not applicable.

11. Quality management Top
11.1. Quality assurance

Not applicable.

11.2. Quality management - assessment

Not applicable.

12. Relevance Top
12.1. Relevance - User Needs

Convergence reports of ECB and the European Commission.

12.2. Relevance - User Satisfaction

Not available.

12.3. Completeness

The collection is complete.

13. Accuracy Top
13.1. Accuracy - overall

Not applicable.

13.2. Sampling error

Not applicable.

13.3. Non-sampling error

Not applicable.

14. Timeliness and punctuality Top
14.1. Timeliness

Monthly data around ten days after the end of the corresponding period.

14.2. Punctuality

Data are generally transmitted in due time.

15. Coherence and comparability Top
15.1. Comparability - geographical

Series are fully comparable between countries. There may be some differences in definition of bonds.

15.2. Comparability - over time

Data can be compared over time.

15.3. Coherence - cross domain

Not applicable.

15.4. Coherence - internal

Not applicable.

16. Cost and Burden Top

The data is calculated based on market data.

17. Data revision Top
17.1. Data revision - policy

Data are revised each time the ECB transmits revised data.

17.2. Data revision - practice

Data revisions may occur within the following month.

Major changes in methodology are announced beforehand.

18. Statistical processing Top
18.1. Source data

Daily and monthly long term interest rates convergence series data are collected by the European Central Bank (ECB) from the national central banks. The ECB also calculates the EU aggregate series, based on the data of the national central banks.

In addition, for the euro area aggregates, daily data on representative long-term government bonds are collected on the markets by the ECB, which is responsible for the calculation of these aggregates.

The country and aggregate data are transmitted to Eurostat by electronic means.

18.2. Frequency of data collection


18.3. Data collection

Not applicable.

18.4. Data validation

Data may be checked with the ECB and/or National central banks.

18.5. Data compilation

Data are interest rates.

From January 1999, the weightings for euro area are based on each country's nominal stock of government bonds of around 10 years' maturity.

For EU aggregates and before 1999 for euro area, the weightings used are national GDP at current prices and purchasing power standards.

The ECB calculates the EU aggregate series, based on the data of the national central banks.

In addition, for the euro area aggregates, daily data on representative long-term government bonds are collected on the markets by the ECB, which calculates this aggregate. 

18.6. Adjustment

Data are not seasonally adjusted. 

19. Comment Top

Further information:

Related metadata Top

Annexes Top