There is widespread agreement among the public authorities and financial industry participants on the merits of establishing a uniform global system for legal entity identification. Such a system would provide a valuable ‘building block’ to contribute to and facilitate many financial stability objectives, including: improved risk management in firms; better assessment of micro and macroprudential risks; facilitation of orderly resolution; containing market abuse and curbing financial fraud; and enabling higher quality and accuracy of financial data overall. It would reduce operational risks within firms by mitigating the need for tailored systems to reconcile the identification of entities and to support aggregation of risk positions and financial data, which impose substantial deadweight costs across the economy. It would also facilitate straight through processing. But despite numerous past attempts, the financial industry has not been successful in establishing a common global entity identifier. The finance sector consequently lags well behind many other industries in agreeing and introducing a consistent global framework for entity identification.