Highlights of the BIS international statistics

15 September 2013

During the first quarter of 2013, the cross-border claims of BIS reporting banks remained broadly unchanged, reflecting two diverging trends. First, lower interbank lending, especially to banks in the euro area, was largely offset by higher claims on non-banks. Second, lower lending to advanced economies contrasted with higher claims on borrowers in emerging market economies, especially in China, Brazil and Russia. As a result, the share of interbank credit to emerging market economies reached its highest level on record. This underpins a longer-term trend: especially in emerging Asia and Latin America, countries generally have been affected less by the global financial crisis.

Japanese banks have returned to their position as the world's largest providers of cross-border credit. They have increasingly been lending out of their offices abroad, whereas the share of cross-border claims booked in Japan has been declining. The international advance of Japanese banks has been funded largely through sources in Japan.

Financial and non-financial corporations headquartered in emerging market economies have overtaken firms from the advanced economies as the largest group of issuers of corporate debt securities in offshore financial centres. The surge in issuance is primarily due to borrowers in just two countries, China and Brazil. Issuing bonds through controlled entities in offshore centres allows them to reach an investor base that would find it hard to invest locally.