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The New ‘Registration Authorities List’, Published by GLEIF, Further Increases the Reliability of the Legal Entity Identifier Data

The new GLEIF Registration Authorities List standardizes the cross reference provided by a legal entity to its local authoritative source

Author: Stephan Wolf

  • Date: 2016-08-31
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On 31 August 2016, the Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF) published its new ‘Registration Authorities List’ (see ‘related links’ below). It contains 652 business registers and other relevant registration authority sources and assigns a unique code to each register on the list. Going forward, Legal Entity Identifier (LEI) issuing organizations will reference this code in their LEI issuance processes and reporting.

The implementation of the GLEIF Registration Authorities List will further increase the reliability and usability of the LEI data.

Recap: A cross reference for the data of the legal entity to a local authoritative source

The LEI connects to key reference information that enables clear and unique identification of legal entities participating in financial transactions. Simply put, the publicly available LEI data pool can be regarded as a global directory that greatly enhances transparency in financial markets. The data pool’s ability to meet this objective relies on the availability of trusted, open and reliable data.

The process of ensuring LEI data quality starts with the registering entity. Through self-registration, the registering entity must provide accurate legal entity reference data to the LEI issuing organization of its choice. LEI issuers (also referenced as ‘Local Operating Units’ or LOUs) supply registration, renewal and other services, and act as the primary interface for legal entities wishing to obtain an LEI.

The Registration Authorities List, published by GLEIF, for the first time standardizes the cross reference provided by the legal entity to its local authoritative source. With this list GLEIF enables users of the LEI data to more easily link the LEI to other data sources.

LEI issuers must ensure the cross reference to the local authoritative source is standardized and included in an LEI record

Users of LEI data will be able to identify the authoritative source associated with the legal entity. The relevant code will be part of the information that makes up an LEI record. All LEI records are publicly available, and can easily be accessed free of charge, on the GLEIF website (see link to the ‘Global LEI Index’ below).

The ‘Common Data File’ (CDF) format (see ‘related links’ below) defines how LEI issuing organizations report their LEI and related reference data. Based on this standard, LEI issuers will identify the local authoritative source associated with the legal entity using the field BusinessRegisterEntityID, which contains two elements:

  • Register: A code that identifies the business register or other registration authority that supplied the value of EntityID (see next bullet). Going forward, this will be the code assigned to an authoritative source included on the GLEIF Registration Authorities List.
  • EntityID: The identifier (local number) of the legal entity as maintained by the authoritative source.

The register may be reported without the accompanying EntityID if this ID is not available.

Implementation of the GLEIF Registration Authorities List

GLEIF will monitor compliance of LEI issuers with the Registration Authorities List based on the following criteria:

  • Within twelve months following the date of publication of the Registration Authorities List, 99 percent of all LEIs issued after that date should indicate the code of the registration authority specified with this list and the EntityID used by this authoritative source to identify the entity.
  • Within 18 months after the date of publication of the Registration Authorities List, 98 percent of all LEIs ever issued should meet these requirements.

The GLEIF Registration Authorities List will continue to evolve. Requests for changes or comments on the document should be sent to

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About the author:

Stephan Wolf is the CEO of the Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF). Since March 2024, he has led the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)’s Industry Advisory Board (IAB) of the Digital Standards Initiative, the global platform for digital trade standards alignment, adoption, and engagement. Before he was appointed as Chair, he had been serving as Vice-Chair of the IAB since 2023. In the same year, he was elected to the Board of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) Germany.

Between January 2017 and June 2020, Mr. Wolf was Co-convener of the International Organization for Standardization Technical Committee 68 FinTech Technical Advisory Group (ISO TC 68 FinTech TAG). In January 2017, Mr. Wolf was named one of the Top 100 Leaders in Identity by One World Identity. He has extensive experience in establishing data operations and global implementation strategies. He has led the advancement of key business and product development strategies throughout his career. Mr. Wolf co-founded IS Innovative Software GmbH in 1989 and served first as its managing director. He was later named spokesman of the executive board of its successor, IS.Teledata AG. This company ultimately became part of Interactive Data Corporation, where Mr. Wolf held the role of CTO. Mr. Wolf holds a university degree in business administration from J. W. Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main.

Tags for this article:
Registration Authorities List, Standards, Data Quality, LEI Issuers (Local Operating Units - LOUs), Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation (GLEIF), Data Management