by Steve Letzler
The new portal for issuing interim legal entity identifiers, called the CICI Utility, has registered and certified more than 1,100 legal entities since going live August 21, adding to the more than 24,000 entities that were pre-validated by the utility. In addition, the portal now gives investment fund managers the option to register funds in bulk to facilitate timely, efficient registrations.
CICI, which is short for CFTC (Commodity Futures Trading Commission) Interim Compliant Identifier, is an early adopter version of the legal entity identifier (LEI) solution based on the ISO 17442 standard, which has been broadly endorsed by the financial services industry and global regulatory community. Both sectors agree that LEIs are a key building block for allowing regulatory reporting that will facilitate systemic risk analysis by regulators and systemic risk bodies, such as the Financial Stability Oversight Council in the U.S.
The CICI is the identifier created by DTCC and SWIFT to enable the industry to satisfy U.S. CFTC requirements. The CFTC is mandating the use of CICIs to identify trading parties in transaction reporting to swap data repositories for over-the-counter (OTC) credit and interest rate derivatives after October 12, 2012, and to identify all other OTC derivatives asset classes after mid-January 2013. Following an open, competitive selection process, the CICI appointed DTCC and SWIFT as the providers of the CICI Utility in July.
“We are delighted at the strong response the CICI Utility has received so far, and we expect to be registering many more legal entities in advance of the CFTC’s deadline for reporting,” said William Hodash, DTCC Managing Director, Business Development, in mid-September. At that time, the CICI Utility had more than 25,000 legal entities registered in the database from more than 80 countries.
The CICI Utility is available at www.ciciutility.org.
The CICI Utility has expanded its services to help financial market participants register for and access CICIs more effectively. Now, investment fund managers have the capability to bulk register their funds and to use a different payment method other than a credit card. Details on this new feature are available through trade associations and on the CICI Utility website.
“One of the key requests we received from customers was for a way to upload a spreadsheet of pre-formatted data that would allow bulk data registrations for fund managers that have hundreds or even thousands of funds to register,” said Ronald Jordan, DTCC’s Chief Data Officer. “We decided to make available to those managers a spreadsheet template that they could use to submit all their funds at once, and to offer a payment method other than credit cards.
“This new capability will be provided for organizations that have a large number of legal entities to register, and need CICIs quickly so they can meet the requirements of the CFTC for trading OTC credit derivatives and interest rate derivatives in October,” Jordan said. “Ordinarily, the CICI Utility is where we expect firms to go if they require a CICI.”
Downloading the data
The utility makes available both full and change files of CICIs for download from its database for free to anyone who registers on the site. (The change file contains only the additions or changes made to the database each day.) Because there are no licenses required and no redistribution restrictions, the data services vendor community can help proliferate CICI usage and also help clients map between the CICI and other proprietary and vendor identifiers, an important integration task for firms.
As of mid-September, there had been more than 740 full database downloads and more than 420 downloads of the daily change file database. The utility has also received more than 275 emails through its customer service email address, firstname.lastname@example.org, from users who had inquiries.
“We are glad to report that operations started very smoothly, and the activity we see on the portal confirms that firms are busy preparing and implementing the new identifiers in their own operations,” said Paul Janssens, SWIFT LEI Programme Director. @