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Legal Entity Identifier

The Legal Entity Identifier (LEI) is a 20 digit, alpha-numeric code designed at the international level in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis. If properly implemented, the LEI will be a ubiquitous data standard that can more precisely identify parties to a broad range of financial transactions, permit greater financial stability monitoring, and reduce regulatory burdens by eliminating overlap and duplication.

​ABA's Position

While a potentially promising development, ABA believes that U.S. regulators considering the use of the LEI should be mindful of the costs and implementation challenges associated with the expansion of the LEI.


 Comment Letters


 Explanation of the Global LEI System


As envisioned by the Financial Stability Board, the Global LEI System has a three-tiered governance structure, which is as follows:

  • Regulatory Oversight Committee: Comprised of public authorities from countries across the world, this body serves as the ultimate overseer of the LEI system.
  • Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation:  Organized as a non-profit under Swiss laws, this organization accredits and monitors “Local Operating Units” (LOUs) and provides the technical infrastructure necessary to unite and make publicly available the LEI information published by the LOUs.
  • Global Markets Entity Identifier Utility:  The Global Markets Entity Identifier (GMEI) Utility is an LOU for U.S. institutions. The GMEI Utility serves as an operational arm of the Global LEI System, handling LEI registration and record maintenance. The GMEI Utility was developed by the DTCC and SWIFT and is where U.S. entities can register for an LEI.

Implementation in the U.S.

International Resources

​Questions? Contact Shaun Kern for more information.

 ABA Staff Contact

  • Shaun Kern, Counsel, Center for Securities, Trust & Investments

 Find Out How to Register for an LEI

​U.S. Banks and other legal entities are able to register for an LEI through the Global Markets Entity Identifier (GMEI) Utility developed by DTCC/SWIFT.

 Related Resources


 Center for Bank Derivatives Policy

ABA's Center for Bank Derivatives Policy is a resource for banks focused on the derivatives markets.

 Derivatives Policy Issues