Financial flows and stocks (nasa_10_f)

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

C2: National Accounts - production

1.5. Contact mail address

2920 Luxembourg LUXEMBOURG

2. Metadata update Top
2.1. Metadata last certified 30/10/2019
2.2. Metadata last posted 30/10/2019
2.3. Metadata last update 30/10/2019

3. Statistical presentation Top
3.1. Data description

Financial flows and stocks data are often referred to collectively in the national accounts framework as 'financial accounts'. Financial flows consist of transactions and other flows, and represent the difference between the opening financial balance sheet at the start of the year and the closing balance sheet at the end of the year.

The data are compiled in accordance with the European System of Accounts (ESA 2010), which came into force in September 2014, and are presented here in the following tables: 'Financial transactions', 'Other changes in volume', 'Revaluation account', and 'Financial balance sheets'. 

3.2. Classification system

The classification system follows the European System of Accounts, 2010 edition (ESA 2010).

Financial accounts data are categorised by financial instrument and institutional sector. The data may be consolidated or non-consolidated (see 3.4 below).

3.3. Coverage - sector

The institutional sectors of ESA 2010 are:

  • Non-financial corporations (S.11),
  • Financial corporations (S.12),
  • General government (S.13),
  • Households (S.14), and
  • Non-profit institutions serving households (S.15),

which aggregate to the Total Economy (S.1) indicator, and the

  • Rest of the World (S.2).

For definitions of institutional sectors and sub-sectors, see ESA 2010 chapter 2.

3.4. Statistical concepts and definitions

Financial transactions take place between resident institutional units, and between them and the rest of the world. They are recorded in the financial account, which shows how the surplus or deficit of the capital account is financed by transactions in financial assets and liabilities. Thus, the balance of the financial account (B.9F) is conceptually equal in value to net lending / net borrowing (B.9) the balancing item of the capital account. The financial account indicates how net borrowing sectors obtain resources by incurring liabilities or reducing assets, and how net lending sectors allocate their surpluses by acquiring assets or reducing liabilities. The financial account also shows the contributions to these transactions of the various types of financial assets, and the role of financial intermediaries. Most transactions involving the transfer of ownership of goods or assets or the provision of services have some counterpart entry in the financial account. Moreover there are many transactions that are recorded entirely within the financial account, where one financial asset is exchanged for another or a liability is repaid with an asset. Financial assets may be created through the incurrence of liabilities. Such transactions change the distribution of the portfolio of financial assets and liabilities and may change their total amounts but do not affect the net lending / net borrowing (B.9).

Balance sheets are statements of the value of the stocks of assets and liabilities at a particular point of time and can be drawn up for institutional units, institutional sectors and the whole economy. The balancing item of the financial balance sheet (i.e., excluding non-financial assets) is the 'net financial assets' (BF.90), calculated as the difference between total financial assets and total liabilities. A closing financial balance sheet is equal to the opening balance sheet plus changes resulting from financial transactions and other flows (revaluations and other changes in volume of financial assets/liabilities).

Other changes in assets record changes that are not the result of transactions. They are either a) Other changes in the volume of assets and liabilities, or b) holding gains and losses. Other changes in volume include the normal appearance and disappearance of assets other than by transactions, changes in assets and liabilities due to exceptional or unanticipated events which are not economic in nature, and changes in classification and structure. Holding gains and losses are recorded in the revaluation account, and occur when there are changes in the prices of assets or liabilities over time, without transforming them in any way.

Financial assets and liabilities: definitions of the categories and sub-categories are provided in ESA 2010 chapter 5.

Time of recording: In principle, flows are recorded on an accrual basis, that is when economic value is created, transformed or extinguished, or when claims and obligations arise, are transformed or are cancelled; the time of recording is often not when cash is exchanged.

Valuation rules: In principle, financial flows and stocks are recorded at exchange or market value. For detailed valuation rules that apply to some categories of financial instruments, see ESA 2010 in Annex below.

Consolidation refers to the elimination of reciprocal flows or stock positions in financial assets and liabilities  between units when the latter are grouped. See ESA 2010 § 1.106-1.109.

3.5. Statistical unit

Institutional units as defined in ESA 2010 § 2.12-2.13.

3.6. Statistical population

The target population consists of the sectors of the national economy, including its relations with the rest of the world. Although population coverage is expected to be 100%, actual coverage depends on sources and compilation methods.

3.7. Reference area

EU and euro area aggregates (where completeness of country data is sufficient), EU Member States, Iceland, Norway, Turkey, Switzerland, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia.

Eurostat receives from OECD in the framework of international data sharing initiative and disseminates data for the following OECD countries: Russia, Canada, United States, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Japan, South Korea, Israel. The applied key statistical concepts can be found under

3.8. Coverage - Time

According to the legislation, EU countries should transmit data from 1995 onwards. However, the lengths of series vary according to country.

3.9. Base period

Not applicable.

4. Unit of measure Top

Data are provided in Euro/ECU, national currency, and as % of GDP. Balance sheet data are also presented in terms of percentage change over previous year. For flow data, annual average exchange rates are used. For balance sheet data, end year exchange rates are used.

National currency series (NAC) (including fixed euro series for euro area Member States) are transmitted by Member states and correspond to nationally published figures. They are suitable for studying the development of a variable in a single country over time.

Euro series (EUR) are derived from transmitted national currency series using historic exchange rates. They are suitable for internal comparison and aggregation. When comparing them over time, account must be taken of exchange rate effects.

5. Reference Period Top

The reference period is the calendar year.

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

National accounts are compiled in accordance with the European System of Accounts ESA 2010 (see annex below), as defined in Annex B of Regulation (EU) No 549/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21 May 2013. The Commission Implementing Decision (EU) 2018/1891 of 30 November 2018 amends the Implementing Decision 2014/403/EU on granting derogations to Member States with respect to the transmission of statistics pursuant to Regulation (EU) No 549/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council concerning the European system of national and regional accounts in the European Union.

6.2. Institutional Mandate - data sharing

The data are transmitted by Eurostat to the ECB and to the OECD.

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

Confidential data are flagged by the data compilers and are not disseminated.

8. Release policy Top
8.1. Release calendar

The official deadline for sending the data according to the ESA 2010 transmission programme is at T + 9 months. However, many countries transmit provisional data earlier, any time from T + 3 months onwards. Once the data of a country is checked and validated by Eurostat, it is released on the public web site. All the data of EU Member States should be validated and published by the third week of October.

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

Annual, though more frequent updates occur when countries send the dataset more than once a year.

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

There are no specific news releases relating to annual financial accounts.

10.2. Dissemination format - Publications

Series may appear in various Eurostat 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 available.

10.5. Dissemination format - other

Please refer to

10.6. Documentation on methodology

Documentation on sources and methods is available from national statistical offices, national central banks, and Eurostat.

10.7. Quality management - documentation

Not available.

11. Quality management Top
11.1. Quality assurance

Quality is assured by application of ESA 2010 concepts and by a validation process on the data delivered by countries.

11.2. Quality management - assessment

ESA 2010 data transmissions are subject to regular quality assessment reviews. Article 4 of Regulation (EU) No 549/2013 (ESA 2010 Regulation) specifies that the data covered by that Regulation is subject to the quality criteria, namely relevance, accuracy, timeliness and punctuality, accessibility and clarity, comparability and coherence, as set out in Article 12(1) of Regulation (EC) No 223/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council. Member States are to provide the Commission with a report on the quality of the transmitted data on national and regional accounts. The modalities, structure, periodicity and assessment indicators of the quality reports on data transmitted have been specified in a Commission Implementing Regulation 2016/2304 of 19 December 2016. The implementation of the quality reporting and assessment exercise started in 2017 and is carried out annually. As part of the annual exercise, Eurostat assesses the results, prepares and publishes an overall assessment based on the national quality reports and other available information. The Commission also, on a 5 year basis, reports to the European Parliament and the Council on the application of the ESA 2010 Regulation, including the quality of data on national and regional accounts. The first of such reports was published in 2018: REPORT FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND THE COUNCIL on the application of Regulation (EU) No 549/2013.

Significant known quality issues are described in Section 19 ('Comment') below.

12. Relevance Top
12.1. Relevance - User Needs

Various needs including for Macroeconomic Imbalance Procedure indicators.

12.2. Relevance - User Satisfaction

Not available.

12.3. Completeness

With some exceptions the dataset is complete, taking into account country 'derogations' (exemptions from the legal obligation to provide the data).

13. Accuracy Top
13.1. Accuracy - overall

Being a very large dataset, it is difficult to measure overall accuracy. Apart from checking the internal consistency of the data, Eurostat undertakes other checks, including revision analysis. Some series are analysed more closely by Eurostat for the purpose of the Macroeconomic Imbalance Procedure. The data for general government sector is compared with other government finance statistics provided to Eurostat.

Significant known inaccuracies are described in Section 19 ('Comment') below.

13.2. Sampling error

Not applicable.

13.3. Non-sampling error

Not applicable.

14. Timeliness and punctuality Top
14.1. Timeliness

For EU countries, the formal transmission deadline is t+9 months. A few countries transmit to Eurostat provisional data at t+3 months and updates each quarter. Other countries may send to Eurostat between t+6 and t+9 months.

14.2. Punctuality

Normally all Member States have transmitted the data within three weeks of the official deadline.

15. Coherence and comparability Top
15.1. Comparability - geographical

In principle the same methodology is followed in all countries.

15.2. Comparability - over time

In principle, data should be comparable throughout the time series.

15.3. Coherence - cross domain

Financial accounts form part of an integrated set of national accounts. Therefore consistency checks are possible with other national accounts tables submitted to Eurostat. Some variables can be cross-checked, for example, with government finance statistics, others to balance of payments statistics. National data may also be checked with official national sources.

Annual financial accounts may also be checked to the quarterly financial accounts supplied by the ECB, although there will be timing and other differences.

15.4. Coherence - internal

Arithmetical consistency and other checks are made by Eurostat on each country's dataset. The EU and euro area aggregates are fully consistent with the country data, as these aggregates are automatically updated as soon as data for a country are revised.

16. Cost and Burden Top

Not available.

17. Data revision Top
17.1. Data revision - policy

For financial accounts, some countries follow the Harmonised European Revision Policy in national accounts to a greater or lesser extent. Others revise according to national schedules. 

17.2. Data revision - practice

Data are rarely flagged as provisional but may be subject to revision, as new input data become available. Improvements in sources and methods may also be implemented and might not be widely announced. Major changes in methodology are the result of legislation, and therefore announced in the Official Journal of the European Union.

18. Statistical processing Top
18.1. Source data

Information may be derived directly from the units of the institutional sector for which they are needed, or else indirectly from counterpart information on other sectors. In many cases, financial intermediaries or institutions are the counterpart, acting as debtor or creditor.

Information in which the financial sector is not involved normally has to be obtained directly. However, in some cases (particularly in the households and non-profit institutions serving households sectors) there is a lack of direct or counterpart information and estimates have to be made. Residual methods (residuals may be obtained after the recording of other items in the accounting framework) may be used for calculating such estimates.

In general, the most important sources used to compile national annual financial accounts are statistics on financial intermediaries, particularly monthly money and banking statistics, and quarterly data provided by other financial institutions. Other main sources are balance of payments and international investment position statistics, government finance statistics and securities data of government debt management bodies, capital market statistics, direct information on non-financial corporations, and surveys of businesses or households. Although source data may come from surveys, the compilation of financial accounts is intended to be exhaustive.

18.2. Frequency of data collection

Annual. In some cases countries transmit the data to Eurostat more frequently, for example quarterly.

18.3. Data collection

Reporting tables of the ESA 2010 transmission programme, to be completed by national authorities. They are transmitted to Eurostat in SDMX compatible files, with a standardised coding system and dataset identifiers.

18.4. Data validation

The validation process consists of arithmetic consistency and other quality checks. 

18.5. Data compilation

Compilation of European aggregates: national data are converted if necessary into euro, or ECU (before 1999), and then summed. Intra-EU and intra-euro area asset and liability positions are not eliminated. The EU and euro area aggregates are published for a particular variable and year only when data for all the countries in the geographical entity are available.  

Consolidation of S.1 (total economy): countries are expected to fully consolidate the data, in other words, all flows and positions between sectors of the economy should be eliminated, leaving only flows and positions with S.2 (rest of the world). However, the following countries have calculated the consolidated data for S.1 as the sum of the consolidated sectors, without consolidating the flows and positions between the sectors: BG, DE, IE, HR, LV, LU, PL, RO, and SK before 2012.

18.6. Adjustment

No adjustments are made to reported country data.

19. Comment Top

Data not available

CZ: Most of the breakdown of sector S.12 is missing for years 2017 and 2018. F.511 is partly missing before 1999. F.62 and F.6M are partly missing for S.2.

HR: Because of a derogation, data for years 1995 to 2001 are not due until 2020. However, data for year 2011 are provided.

LU: Because of a derogation, data for years 1995 to 1998 are not due until 2020.

RO: F.66, assets, S.2 should be flagged 'not aplicable' or contain a value.

SE: F.2, assets, S.1 is missing for other changes in volume and revaluation accounts.

IS: Because of a derogation, data for years 1995 to 2002 are not due until 2020. Consolidated transactions and balance sheets data are missing. Sub-instrument series are missing in the non-consolidated tables. All data for year 2003 are missing.

CH: Consolidated tables are missing, as well as many non-consolidated series.

TR: Data for some sub-instruments are missing.

Data quality issues

BG: Transactions data for year 1995 are considered to be of a lesser quality.

DE: Data for 1995-1998 are considered to be of a lesser quality and have internal inconsistencies.

DE, IE, FR, HR and RO: In the consolidated tables, S.12 is not fully consolidated between the component sub-sectors.

EE: Large revaluations in S.13 assets in AF.519 in 2014 and 2018, and corresponding revaluations in S.11 liabilities, relating to a state-owned company. This recording results in differences with the financial accounts of general government.

IE: Most data for 1995-1998 are not for publication due to quality issues.

CY: Large upward revision in assets and liabilities of the financial corporations sector due to enhanced coverage of special purpose entities.

SK: Series break in 2012. From 2012 onwards the data are fully consolidated at total economy level, and debt securities at recorded at market value.

FI: Large increase in assets and liabilities of the financial corporations sector in 2018 due to international group changes.

UK: There are sizeable negative stock values for various series.

Related metadata Top

Annexes Top
ESA 2010