Canadian Government Finance Statistics
Financial asset of institutional unit, category
Financial asset refers to all financial claims, shares or other equity in corporations plus gold bullion held by monetary authorities as a reserve asset. Gold bullion held by monetary authorities as a reserve asset is treated as a financial asset even though the holders have no claim over other designated units. Shares are treated as financial assets even though the financial claim their holders have on the corporation is not a fixed or predetermined monetary amount.
Institutional unit refers to an economic entity that is capable, in its own right, of owning assets, incurring liabilities, and engaging in economic activities and in transactions with other entities. There is a hierarchical relationship between institutional units and establishments. An institutional unit contains one or more entire establishment(s); an establishment belongs to one and only one institutional unit. There are two main types of units in the real world that may qualify as institutional units, namely persons or groups of persons in the form of households, and legal or social entities.