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Legal Entity Identifier

From 1 September 2021, all legal entities intending to trade with financial instruments on a regulated trading venue need to have a Legal Entity Identifier (LEI).

What is a Legal Entity Identifier?

LEI stands for Legal Entity Identifier and is an international identity number used for the identification of legal entities.  The aim is to enable international regulators to monitor transactions by individual legal entities and thereby to enhance monitoring of systemic risk and facilitate investigations into misconduct linked to securities transactions. Further information can be on the website of ESMA.

Who needs an LEI?

The Financial Supervisory Authority of the Central Bank of Iceland (FSA) requires all legal entities (e.g. limited companies, mutual funds and pension funds) to have an LEI in order to trade with listed securities and financial instruments listed on a regulated securities market. Individuals do not require an LEI to trade. 

From 1 September 2021 Arion Bank will not be permitted to trade with financial instruments on behalf of a legal entity without an LEI. Legal entities are permitted to own and hold listed securities acquired before the end of 2017 without an LEI. However, an LEI is required to trade with the securities. 

An LEI is not required for legal entities to trade with units in mutual funds. 

How to apply for an LEI?

Numerous companies are licensed to issue LEI, e.g.:

A list of the organizations licensed to issue LEI can be found on gleif.org. In most cases it takes 2-5 days to get an LEI and it costs around 100 euros, although each issuer has its own list of fees. The LEI needs to be renewed annually and an annual fee must be paid. It is possible to search for the name of the legal entity to check whether an LEI has already been issued.

When applying for an LEI, clients need to provide the LEI issuer with the following information:

  • Legal name
  • Legal name in English, if applicable
  • Address of legal entity
  • Country in which the legal entity was established
  • Address of the legal entity’s headquarters, if applicable
  • Business Register Entity ID/Registration Authority Entity ID, ID number must be entered without the dash
  • Number of Business Register/Registration Authority (RA000393 in Iceland)
  • Type of legal entity (e.g. public limited company, private limited company, partnership, fund, etc.)
  • Information on the parent entity, if applicable
  • Information on associated entities, if applicable
  • Statement verifying the user is authorized to register on behalf of legal entity – in some cases issuers have a standard form
  • Certificate of registration in English

Please note that the information requirements may vary between issuers. In some cases it may not be necessary to provide all the above information, while in other cases additional information may be required.
Once the legal entity has received an LEI, it must be sent with further information on the company (name, address and ID number), to Arion Bank at LEI@arionbanki.is.