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Date : Apr 10, 2008

The Basic Statistical Returns (BSR) System introduced in December 1972 has been in force for more than three and half decades. The improvements in the system are effected from time to time. To provide guidance for filling in of BSR 1 and 2 returns, the Reserve Bank brought out the first Handbook of Instructions in September 1972. Consequent upon the improvements and revisions in the BSR system, the Handbook was revised in January 1978, January 1984, January 1990, March 1996 and March 2002. In the last revision of March 2002, a new occupation/ activity coding system in BSR was introduced, which was in line with National Industrial Classification (NIC) - 1998 (which was based on International Standard Industrial Classification (ISIC) Rev.3 – 1990) for bringing uniformity in the classification system for comparability of the data, nationally as well as internationally. As a result of changes in the structure of the economy in the past couple of years, many new activities have come in existence or have become prominent and some old activities have become obsolete or insignificant. There have also been a few changes in the related systems. An updated NIC-2004, based on ISIC Rev.3.1 – 2002, has been released by the Central Statistical Organisation.  The United Nation Statistical Division has released the ISIC Rev.4 (draft) – 2007 and its implementation, after acceptance, by various countries will commence soon. The definition and concept of Small Enterprises (SE), comprising small and micro enterprises engaged in manufacturing and services, have been introduced in place of Small Scale Industries (SSI). The present edition, seventh in the line, provides for these amendments in the system. The revision also aims at bringing about improvement in the quality of data reported by the banks. The periodicity of BSR survey will remain yearly as hitherto and reference date of BSR-1 and BSR-2 will continue to be 31st March so as to coincide with the accounting year of the banks. However, in order to get more exhaustive and useful information, it has been decided to collect certain additional information through BSR-1.

The salient features of the present edition are outlined below:

(a) The Kisan Credit Cards, General Credit Cards and Other Credit Cards have been included as the Type of Accounts along with the existing Personal Credit Cards.

(b) The Organisation codes of the borrower have been restructured. Financial and Non-Financial organizations have been separately defined under Public, Private and Cooperative Sectors. Separate codes have been included for Self Help Groups (SHGs)/ Micro-Finance Institutions (MFIs).

(c) The Occupation/ Activity codes have been reorganized. ‘Personal Loans’ has been divided into two separate groups; Staff Loans and Other than Staff Loans. Repair and maintenance services have been grouped in separate division.

(d) The Indirect Finance to Agriculture has been re-structured as per the latest RPCD circulars Nos. RPCD.Plan.BC.84/04.09.01/2006-07 dated 30-04-2007 and RPCD.Plan.BC.42/04.09.01/2007-08 dated 12-12-2007. New codes have been introduced to capture data on Indirect Finance to Housing and Small Enterprises sectors. New occupations have been included for diversified activities of SHGs/ MFIs.

(e) Loans to RRBs have been grouped separately for on-lending to agriculture and allied activities and for other purposes.

(f) Classification of loans to Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) have been done based upon on-lending to agriculture and allied activities, small and micro enterprises, housing sector, educational purposes and other general purposes.

(g) A new ‘Category of Borrowers’, based on the size of the borrowing unit, has been introduced in place of ‘Nature of Borrowal Account’.

(h) A new parameter ‘Security pledged/ Guarantee Status for loans’ has been introduced to capture the secured/unsecured loans.

(i) A flag to capture ‘Fixed / Floating rate of interest on loans’ has also been included.

3. BSR-1 Part-B return has also been revised.  In view of the change in the occupation/ activity coding system of BSR-1A, new 3-digit BSR-1B item codes have been introduced in place of 2-digit codes, which includes a few new items too. The BSR-1B return will continue to have two separate credit limit size groups, i.e. ‘Upto Rs. 25,000’ and ‘Over Rs. 25,000 and upto Rs. 2 lakhs’.

4. There is no revision in the BSR-2 return. The data on credit and deposits as per Form-A, Section-42(2) return, which are collected in BSR-1B and BSR-2 respectively, is to be reported as on 31st March, instead of as on last Friday of March. A detailed list of changes in this Handbook with respect to the last Handbook (March 2002, Sixth Edition) is given in the Annexure.

5. Concordance tables have also been provided giving relationship between Occupation/ Item codes of 2002 and 2008 coding systems.

6. The revised Handbook contains detailed instructions for filling in BSR-1 and BSR-2 returns along with the list of revised codes to be used for classification of borrowal accounts. A relationship table between BSR-1A and BSR-1B occupation codes is also provided for easier compilation. This revised scheme will be effective from March 2008 round of survey. In order to facilitate the bank staff to report the data in BSR-1 correctly, some examples illustrating the method of classification of credit limit and outstanding credit in BSR-1 are also given in this Handbook. In addition to BSR-1 and BSR-2, particulars regarding other Basic Statistical Returns required to be submitted to the Reserve Bank of India have been indicated in the Annexure to this Handbook.

7. The BSR survey results are important from the viewpoint of policy formulation and research. As such, timely submission of these returns is absolutely necessary to release the results of the surveys in time. While it is visible that the banks have improved quality and timeliness of BSR system over the years, further improvements could be made if the banks make use of their valuable BSR data as part of their MIS and analysis. It is hoped that the banks would strengthen the BSR system in full measure.

Department of Statistical Analysis
and Computer Services
Reserve Bank of India
Bandra-Kurla Complex
Bandra (East)
Mumbai - 400 051.
February 20, 2008.

Balwant Singh
Adviser, DESACS, RBI and
Committee of Direction on
Banking Statistics