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Financial Company Reference Database

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The Dodd-Frank Act directed the OFR to prepare and publish a financial company reference database easily accessible to the public.

During the financial crisis of 2007-09, the financial industry, regulators, and policymakers struggled to trace quickly the exposures and connections of Lehman Brothers and others across the financial system. This problem highlighted the need for a globally recognized identifier for legal entities.

To execute the Dodd-Frank mandate, the OFR has played a leadership role in developing and launching a global legal entity identifier (LEI) system to help in mapping connections in the financial system, and to make cleaning, aggregating, and reporting data easier and less costly for industry and regulators.

In just a few years, a public-private partnership has built the global LEI system. Its governance framework contains a Regulatory Oversight Committee of more than 80 public authorities from more than 50 jurisdictions overseeing the system in the public interest. The Global Legal Entity Identifier Foundation, the system’s central operating utility, ensures the operational integrity of the system, while a worldwide network of local operating units assign the LEIs.

The system reached a milestone when the foundation ( launched the Global LEI Index, a repository of data, updated daily, on the hundreds of thousands of companies that have been issued LEIs. It has also begun collecting information about ownership structures within these institutions.

The public may easily access and search the complete LEI data pool free of charge, plus view and export search results in a variety of formats.