The European Pre-Issuance Messaging Service (EPIM)

The Pre-Issuance Messaging Service (PIM) enables Dealers and issuing paying agent (IPA) banks that service money market instrument (MMI) securities to communicate issuance instructions prior to market issuance.

OVERVIEW

The European Pre-Issuance Messaging service (EPIM) is a robust ISIN request and allocation system that automates and improves the process of issuing designated European Money Market Instruments, such as Euro Commercial Paper (CP), Euro Certificates of Deposit (CDs) and Euro Medium Term Notes (MTNs).

The Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC), Clearstream Banking and Euroclear Bank joined forces in 2001 to develop EPIM. Based on DTCC's Pre-Issuance Messaging system (PIM) system in use in the U.S., but adapted to the specific requirements of the European Money Markets, EPIM was conceived to automate and increase the efficiency of the issuance of Euro CPs and Euro CDs.

Officially launched in May 2002, the service has attracted significant volumes of pre-issuance communication and has established itself as a central component of the Euro CP market infrastructure. Since July 2008, the technology and productivity of the EPIM service have been further expanded to support pre-issuance communication and ISIN/Common Code allocation for the Euro MTN market.

EPIM has notably reduced the industry manual processing costs and shortened the settlement cycles (e.g., T+0) while preserving the flexibility that characterizes the Euro CP market.

WHO CAN USE THE SERVICE

As a central messaging hub, EPIM links the various parties involved in numbering and issuing these securities, including the dealers, the Issuing and Paying Agents' (IPAs) banks, and the relevant numbering agencies – Clearstream Banking and Euroclear Bank – that also act as primary place of deposit.

Through EPIM, these players can exchange standardized and secure issuance information in real-time while improving the issuance and ISIN/Common Code allocation functionalities.

BENEFITS

As a first-class solution for all parties involved in the primary issuance of Euro CPs, CDs and now MTNs, EPIM has enabled the international short-term paper markets to grow and move towards same-day settlement.

  • Large Global Community of Users: Over 20 major financial institutions that service European Money Markets — including the main IPAs and dealers — harness the productivity and efficiency offered through EPIM.
  • Customer-Centric: The EPIM solution was developed in close collaboration with various dealers, IPAs and trade associations (ICMA and ICMSA) that have in-depth knowledge about the market needs.
  • Cost Effective: EPIM users have benefited from consistent, cost-effective pricing. In fact, the pricing has remained the same since 2001 and will not be impacted by the extension of its coverage to support new Money Market securities such as Euro MTNs. Furthermore, the tariff will be based on a sliding scale, taking into account the consolidated activity across the different markets covered by EPIM (CPs, CDs and MTNs).
  • Operational Efficiency: EPIM delivers greater operational efficiency by eliminating the labor-intensive and error-prone phone, fax and e-mail-based communications inherent during the ISIN request and allocation processes between dealers, IPAs and Clearstream Banking and Euroclear Bank. Through this streamlined, industry-standard messaging and automated workflow, EPIM has increased accuracy and reduced processing errors, discrepancies and delays – while at the same time, significantly lowering users' operational costs.
  • Connectivity Options: To minimize users' costs, there are several ways to connect to EPIM, including using existing DTCC MQ connections and the newly offered SWIFTNet TDA access.
  • Trusted Service Providers: Euroclear Bank, Clearstream Banking and DTCC have an outstanding reputation for reliability, certainty, trust and experience in providing the financial services with operational efficiency.

HOW THE SERVICE WORKS

EPIM serves as an integrated gateway, leveraging the IBM international MQSeries commercial messaging software. On behalf of Euroclear Bank and Clearstream Banking, DTCC is the licensed service provider that operates and manages the EPIM messaging hub.

The following processing rules apply:

  • The dealer-initiated ISIN request (DIR) message kicks off the EPIM process.
  • All communication with Clearstream Banking and Euroclear Bank is via the IPA;
  • Each user has its own connection with the EPIM hub.
  • Messages are sent and received via standard protocol and record layouts through a central messaging hub located at DTCC.
  • Undeliverable messages are returned, provided customers have set the 'confirm on arrival' parameter.
  • All messages are recovered in the event of a system failure, provided customers have chosen the 'persistent' mode.
  • The dealer and the IPA must obtain an EPIM sign-on ID.
  • The password protocol must be set between the dealer and the IPA; and
  • All errors are transmitted to notify the concerned party using the specific error code fields in the reply records.

EPIM is open for processing from 21:00 (Central European Time) on Sunday until 21:00 (Central European Time) on the following Saturday. All messages sent during closing time are queued until the system reopens. The ICSDs, Clearstream Banking and Euroclear Bank are open for processing EPIM messages during normal European office hours.

IMPLEMENTATION

To use EPIM, dealers and IPAs must take the following steps:

  • Contact Euroclear Bank or Clearstream Banking to request a Getting Started Pack. This package contains the necessary information and documentation to use EPIM.
  • Complete the DTCC EPIM Subscription Agreement forms.
  • Establish a communication line connection to EPIM, if one does not already exist, and program the messages and data fields.
  • Successfully test the application, and be granted access to the EPIM production environment.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

For more information, contact Client Support at 1-888-382-2721, Option 2 then Option 1.

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