Swift has met customer demand for Business Identifier Code (BIC) to Legal Entity Identifier (LEI) mapping with a BIC to LEI directory for users of its SwiftRef payments data platform and BIC to LEI mapping in a handful of its existing products. The company says it has mapped 4,800 BICs to pre-LEIs – over time Swift has issued more than 100,000 BICs worldwide – but expects that number to increase steadily as more pre-LEIs are issued in the interim LEI system that will ultimately become a complete global LEI system.
Initially, Swift is mapping pre-LEIs issued by the DTCC/Swift CICI utility, a pre-Local Operating Unit (pre-LOU) in the interim LEI system that issues CFTC Interim Compliant Identifiers (CICIs) on behalf of the CFTC. It is also mapping German Entity Identifiers (GEI) issued by pre-LOU WM Datenservice on behalf of the German regulator Bundesanstalt f?r Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht. Interim Entity Identifiers (IEIs), pre-LEIs issued by the London Stock Exchange (LSE) on behalf of the UK Financial Conduct Authority, have yet to be included in the directory as issuance only started in early August.
Paul Janssens, LEI programme director at Swift, says: “Everyone must map identifiers to LEIs, but the biggest cost is maintaining the mapping. So, Swift will do this, lowering the cost for everyone.”
Janssens says the pre-LEI reference data that Swift is working with is of good quality and suggests pre-LEIs from other active pre-LOUs – at the moment only the LSE – will be mapped to BICs and become part of the directory once file formats are stable and numbers warrant the work necessary for integration. He also notes that while the BICs and pre-LEIs of large financial institutions will be mapped, not all BICs will be mapped to pre-LEIs and vice versa as the scope of the identifiers is different. For example, funds and their associated entities are not relevant to the BIC coding scheme.
The BIC to LEI directory is available immediately to SwiftRef users and will be updated on a daily basis, providing financial institutions and corporates that process thousands of payments every day with up-to-date data. BIC to LEI mapping is also available in the existing SwiftRef Bank Directory Plus product and through FileAct, SwiftRef’s regular file messaging service. It can also be accessed in Bankers World Online, an online query tool.
Janssens concludes: “LEIs will not replace BICs as they have different functions, but we will keep adding LEIs and mapping them dynamically to BICs, a task that is all about precision data. If there is user demand, we will also add BIC to LEI mapping to other Swift products.”