Euroclear sets new message standards

18 December 2008

Euroclear SA/NV has received approval from the ISO 20022 registration bodies for a new set of ISO 20022 messages to be used throughout the global capital markets. This is the first set of approved ISO 20022 messages developed by an organisation operating in the securities industry other than SWIFT.

Starting in 2010, the new messages will be used by central securities depositories (CSDs) and issuer-appointed agents to communicate both corporate action information and instructions between them. The new standard aims to replace paper-based and proprietary messages used today. The benefits of using ISO 20022 communication standards between CSDs and issuer agents include greater straight-through processing opportunities from issuers through to end investors. As a result, it will be possible for intermediaries and end investors to have faster access to relevant corporate action information from which to take appropriate decisions on securities holdings.

Jean-Marie Eloy, manager of the ISO 20022 Registration Authority, said: “Euroclear is supporting the convergence to ISO 20022 from two critical angles: helping to develop the ISO 20022 message portfolio which now includes 198 messages and acting as a catalyst for the adoption of ISO 20022 messages by an important industry segment. Gaining the support of global market infrastructures such as Euroclear is key to the success of the standard.”

Edwin De Pauw, Director and head of Market Harmonisation and Communication at Euroclear, said: “We are proud to contribute to the harmonisation of business practices globally, as well as for our own client purposes. Moving to ISO 20022 standards for corporate action communications between CSDs and issuer agents is in line with the Group of Thirty and Giovannini Group recommendations covering Barriers 1 and 3. It also supports the work done by the Barrier 3 Corporate Actions Joint Working Group in encouraging the adoption of ISO 20022 as the communications protocol to enable greater automation and more timely corporate action information flows.”

Each day, the Euroclear international and national CSDs manage more than 3,000 corporate actions, process more than 2,500 corporate action instructions from clients and distribute around 77,000 cash or securities proceeds.

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