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Mr. Philip R. Lane and Mr. Gian M Milesi-Ferretti
This note documents and assesses the role of small financial centers in the international financial system using a newly-assembled dataset. It presents estimates of the foreign asset and liability positions for a number of the most important small financial centers, and places these into context by calculating the importance of these locations in the global aggregate of cross-border investment positions. It also reports some information on bilateral cross-border investment patterns, highlighting which countries engage in financial trade with small financial centers.
Mr. Philip R. Lane and Mr. Gian M Milesi-Ferretti

Front Matter Page Research Department Contents I. Introduction II. International financial activities of Small Financial Centers III. Data Construction IV. Country Characteristics and External Balance Sheet of the sifc group V. Bilateral patterns VI. The Effects of the Financial Crisis: A Preliminary Look VII. Concluding Remarks Appendix 1 Appendix 2 References Tables 1. Small Financial Centers: Main International Financial Activity 2. Basic Country Characteristics 3. Political Status of Small International Financial

Mr. Philip R. Lane and Mr. Gian M Milesi-Ferretti

arbitrage. In relation to emerging markets, the existence of capital controls and rules that differentiate between foreign and domestic investors can also induce significant round-tripping activity. For instance, Hong Kong plays a significant role in FDI and portfolio round-tripping for China, while Mauritius fulfills a similar function for India. III. D ata C onstruction We consider a group of thirty-two small international financial centers, which we will label the SIFC group. We omit from this list several important international financial centers such as