Statistics Iceland releases now an aggregated overview of quarterly central and local government non-financial accounts for the 1st quarter of 2005. The figures are on accruals basis. These quarterly overviews are published 90 days after the end of the respective quarter. This data collection started a year ago which now allows comparison with the same quarter last year.

The accounts for the central government are based on information from the Government Financial Management Authority but the data for local governments are based on a sample of accounts from 10 municipalities with 59.4% of the population in Iceland. These have been grossed up by Statistics Iceland. So far the breakdown of the data is rather limited but there are plans for providing more detailed data in the future. Here two concepts are used to measure the financial result of the government. The first one is the concept called financial balance, which more or less corresponds to the national accounts concept, net lending/net borrowing, where gross fixed capital formation has been subtracted from the revenue but depreciation is not. The other concept is the operating balance where depreciation is expensed but gross fixed capital formation is not. Only the first one concept is available for the central government and therefore the result for the general government is also restricted to that concept. 

According to these preliminary data the central government revenue for the 1st  quarter of 2005 amounted to 82.0 billion ISK and the financial balance was positive by 8.7 billion ISK, a substantial improvement from previous year.

Central government finances in the 1st quarter 2004-2005
  2004 Billion ISK

2005 Billion ISK

Percentage changes
1. Current Revenue 66,9 82,0 22,5
2. Current expendit. and investm. excl. depreciation 68,3 73,3 7,3
    2.1 Thereof investment 3,9 3,0 -22,4
3. Financial balance (3.=1.-2.)  -1,4 8,7  
4. Financial balance, % of revenue -2,0 10,6  
5. Financial balance,  % of annual GDP -0,2 0,9  

The revenue of the local government in the first quarter 2005 amounted to 23.4 billion ISK and the operating balance turned out to be positive of 0.7 billion ISK but the financial balance became negative of 0.4 billion ISK due to higher investments than depreciation. Both these indicators showed an improvement in local government finances from the same quarter in previous year.

Local governments finances in the 1st quarter 2004-2005
  2004 Billion ISK 2005 Billion ISK Percentage changes
1. Current Revenue 21,4 23,4 9,2
2. Current expendit. incl. depreciation  excl. investments 21,5 22,7 5,6
    2.1 Thereof depreciation 1,3 1,4 4,6
3. Operating balance (3.=1.-2.)  -0,1 0,7  
4. Operating balance, % of revenue -0,5 2,8  
5. Gross fixed capital formation 2,8 2,5  
6. Financial balance (6.=3.+2.1-5.) -1,6 -0,4  
7. Financial balance,  % of revenue -7,5 -1,9  
8. Financial balance,  % of annual GDP -0,2 0,0  

The total revenue of the general government, i.e. central and local governments, is estimated 105.4 billion ISK in the 1st quarter of 2005 and increased by 19.3% from the same quarter year before. At the same time the current expenditure including investments but excluding depreciation increased substantially less or by 6.4% which resulted in an improvement of the overall financial balances of general government. Now it is estimated as 7.8% of total revenue compared with -3.4% in the 1st quarter of 2004.

General government finances in the 1st quarter 2004-2005
  2004 Billion ISK 2005 Billion ISK Percentage changes
1. Current Revenue 88,3 105,4 19,3
2. Current expenditure and investm. excl. depreciation 91,3 97,1 6,4
    2.1 Thereof investment 6,7 5,5 -18,0
3. Financial balance (3.=1.-2.)  -3,0 8,3  
4. Financial balance, % of revenue -3,4 7,8  
5. Financial balance,  % of annual GDP -0,3 0,9  

In the figures presented here, both revenue and expenditure figures are recorded on  accruals basis whereas the monthly figures published by the Government Financial Authority are on  cash basis. Accruals basis means that flows are recorded when they are established regardless of when the actual payment is made. The data presented here, both for central and local government, are preliminary. In particular, the information on investment of the local government is sketchy.
Statistics (See: "General government quarterly non-financial accounts 2004-2005")

Further Information

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