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Glossary and references


Economic ownership

The institutional unit assuming the benefits of use and risk of the asset in case of damage, destruction and theft etc is the economic owner.

Financial instrument

Because of the symmetry of financial assets and liabilities, the same classification is used to portray both assets and liabilities. The term ‘financial instrument’ refers to either the asset or liability aspect of a category in the classification.

Institutional units

Institutional units are the fundamental units identified in the economy. They interact with other institutional units, make decisions, and undertake their activity to achieve certain objectives. How they behave within the economy reflects their role – the units are grouped into institutional sectors based on having similar roles.


Maturity is the date at which the final repayment of a financial asset or liability is due; by extension, a measure of the scheduled life of the financial asset or liability.


Financial instruments can be distinguished as being negotiable or not. A claim is negotiable if its legal ownership is readily able to be transferred from one unit to another unit, by delivery or endorsement. While any financial instrument can potentially be traded, negotiable instruments are designed to be traded on organised and other markets.

Non-participating preference shares

These shares pay a fixed income but do not provide for participation in the distribution of the residual value of an incorporated enterprise on dissolution. These are classified as debt securities.

See appendix 2 for category definitions.

Residual categories

Not elsewhere classified (nec)

A 'not elsewhere classified' (nec) category is a residual category that appears within a classification for responses that are infrequent or unanticipated. An nec category never appears within a classification as a stand-alone descriptor, but is combined with descriptors, often taken from a higher level in the classification.


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