Further details about M3 (estimate of European monetary union aggregate for the UK) data

The M3 aggregate is made up of monetary liabilities of monetary and financial Institutions in the UK vis-à-vis non-MFI UK residents, excluding central government.

View the data


Data are available from April 1993 on a monthly basis, both seasonally adjusted and non seasonally adjusted. We usually publish these data on the twenty-first working day following the end of the period, or in M3 (estimate of EMU aggregate for the UK) (Table A2.3).


The estimate for M3 is compiled using components of M4, which in turn is derived from the consolidated balance sheet of monetary and financial Institutions in the UK. These data are sourced from three types of monetary and financial institutions:

UK-resident banks

All UK-resident banks report data to us quarterly on Form BT. Banks with UK private sector deposits or loans over £1,000 million or eligible liabilities over £400 million report data monthly. A further sector breakdown of business with UK residents is also provided monthly on Form BE, by UK-resident banks that report the Form BT monthly. All data are reported in sterling, with foreign currency data converted to sterling at the middle spot sterling exchange rate at 4pm on the last working day of the month.

UK-resident building societies

Since January 2008 data from building societies have been collected on the same basis as for UK-resident banks, on the forms Forms BT and BE on a monthly basis (see Statistics article ‘Transition of building society statistical reporting’. Before this, data for building societies were collected by the Financial Services Authority. These figures were based on a sample of societies, which were grossed up to achieve full coverage of the building society population in the published data.

UK central bank

Data from the Bank of England are collected on the same basis as for other UK-resident banks, monthly on the Forms BT and BE. Before March 1998 the Banking Department of the Bank of England was included in the banks sector, whilst the Issue Department was included as part of central government, and hence did not appear on the monetary financial institution consolidated balance sheet.


The European Central Bank's broad monetary aggregate is M3. This encompasses also two narrower aggregates, M1 and M2.

Euro-area M3 is made up of monetary liabilities of euro-area monetary financial institutions (MFIs) and central government (Debt Management Office) vis-à-vis non-MFI euro-area residents excluding central government, in all currencies:

  • currency in circulation (M1)
  • overnight deposits (M1)
  • deposits with agreed maturity up to two years (M2)
  • deposits redeemable at notice up to three months (M2)
  • repurchase agreements
  • money market fund shares/units and money market paper
  • debt securities up to two years.

The estimate of M3 we compile for the UK is made up of monetary liabilities of MFIs in the UK vis-à-vis non-MFI UK residents excluding central government, in all currencies. The UK reporting system does not currently identify the maturity breakdowns used in the euro-area definition. These are therefore estimated.

The euro-area aggregate does not include the adjustments for transit items and the inter-MFI reporting difference, which are made for UK M4. A reconciliation table which illustrates the differences between M4 and this estimate of M3 is available on request.

These data therefore provide an estimate of M3 for the UK. These data replaced the M3H European harmonised aggregate, which was previously published to facilitate international comparisons between EU member states.

M3H comprised the components of M4 plus:

  • foreign currency deposits held by the M4 private sector with MFIs in the UK
  • sterling and foreign currency deposits held by UK public corporations with MFIs in the UK.

For further information on the compilation of these aggregates see the Statistics article 'Euro area monetary aggregates and their role in the Eurosystem's monetary policy strategy' in the ECB's Monthly Bulletin.

Valuation and breaks

Data are subject to the same valuation and break adjustments as M4 counterparts data.

Building societies transition to Bank of England reporting

Building societies' statistical reporting transitioned from the Financial Services Authority to the Bank of England on 1 January 2008, and more detailed information about the composition of building societies' deposits became available. The estimates used in the calculation of M1, M2 and M3 have been updated to reflect this. The effects of this change have been removed from the flows data.

Further Information

UK monetary aggregates: main definitional changes Bank of England (2003) Statistics article, July
Euro area monetary aggregates and their role in the Eurosystem's monetary policy strategy, European Central Bank (1999) ECB Monthly Bulletin, February

This page was last updated 31 January 2023