Data quality, concepts and methodology: Summary methodology for the production of quarterly international investment positions

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Quarterly position data for Canada's international investment position are produced from 1990 onward. Supplementary estimates of portfolio investments in bonds and equities at market value are available from 1990 onward. On the liability side, market value estimates of portfolio investments in Canadian money market are available from 2002.

On the asset side, estimates of portfolio investments in foreign money market instruments became available in 2002. Before 2002, foreign money market was part of other investment.

Direct investment

Annual surveys of the book value of direct investment form the basis of the benchmark estimates for the year-end positions. Quarterly positions between these benchmarks and for periods subsequent to the latest benchmark data (noted as preliminary) are estimated using quarterly flows at market value adjusted to book value. These flows include reinvested earnings.

Portfolio investment

The Survey of Canadian Portfolio Investment provides a benchmark for annual positions at market value for foreign equities and bonds. Market value benchmarks are converted to book values using capitalization ratios to derive the book value estimates. Quarterly positions between these benchmarks and for periods subsequent to the latest benchmark data (noted as preliminary) are estimated using quarterly flows at market value, in the case of the market value series, and flows adjusted to book value for the series at book value. Quarterly positions at market value are, in addition, adjusted to take into account fluctuations in the prices of the assets.

A detailed system is used to process data on Canadian bonds and both Canadian and foreign money market instruments. Positions are derived on an issue-by-issue basis and can be automatically produced on a quarterly basis. The system generates positions at both, market and book values.

Quarterly positions for Canadian equities at book value are derived using quarterly flows adjusted for market to book valuation. In terms of market value, the book value benchmark for Canadian equities is converted at market value using capitalization ratios on an issue by issue basis. Subsequently, quarterly positions are generated using flows at market value and price changes.

Other investment

Outstanding loans issued by banks and governments are available on a quarterly basis. Loans from other corporations are derived from annual surveys and quarterly flows. Deposits are also available from the banks on a quarterly basis. Official international reserve assets are available on a monthly basis. The other miscellaneous accounts are based on annual surveys adjusted to quarterly positions using quarterly flows.

Currency fluctuations

In addition, outstanding positions for all accounts denominated in foreign currency are re-evaluated each quarter to reflect changes in exchange rates.