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Do You Have A CSN?

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Numbers, Numbers and More Numbers.

A CSN is always nine digits long and always starts with 33, if your number doesn't, it isn't so get one.

If you decide you want to sell your New Zealand listed securities (shares, notes or bonds) "on the market". You can only do so if you have a Common Shareholder Number (CSN). A holder number or shareholder number and a CSN number are NOT the same thing.

If you don't already have a CSN your broker will first have to get a CSN generated. This isn't difficult or complicated (for you) but it does take time, so it delays the sale process. Instead of selling this morning you might have to wait a day or two. As you know prices can move significantly in a day or two.

So what should you do?

Note that all NZ registries can, and indeed should, use the same CSN.

Listed companies in New Zealand use either Computershare or Link to look after their share registry. It is possible to have holdings on both registries with one registry having a CSN for you but not the other. It is also possible, and quite common, for each registry to have different CSNs, or multiple CSN's on the same registry. Your broker can "link" or amalgamate them so you end up with one.

The benefit of you having a single CSN is that you can then see all your holdings at each registry at once, whether on Securities Transaction Statements or online and you can get a tax summary for all securities on one document, so you only have to pay for it once. It also means you have a single FIN making it easier to remember.

If you aren't sure whether you have all your listed securities on the one CSN check. In the long run it will make your life easier.

Gather together all your numbers and their associated FIN's and separate them into those managed by Computershare and those managed by Link. If you have more than one CSN already decide which one you are going to keep. Then give all the information to your broker and tell them you want them amalgamated.

Or give us a call and we'll help you get them amalgamated.

If you Can't Find your FIN

Ring the registry concerned and quote your holder, shareholder or CSN and ask them to post you a new one. The registry will not give it to you over the phone, fax it, or email it. They will only post it and of course they will only post it to the address that they have recorded. And they wont change the recorded address without you quoting your FIN number. Your registered address is correct isn't it?

Share Registry

A Share Registry is the record of who holds how many securities in a company, with their name and address, phone, email and IRD number. In New Zealand their are two companies that perform this function for almost all our listed and many unlisted companies, Link Market Services (+64 9 375 5998 ) and ComputerShare (+64 9 488 8777). The company (or sometimes person) that performs this function is called the Registrar.

Common Shareholder Number - CSN

All investors who purchase securities listed on the NZX through a broker, will be allocated a CSN which will be your common holder number across all NZX listed securities (all New Zealand registrars will hold that single number as your holder number).

Holder Number or Shareholder Number

The Registrar for the issuer in which you hold your securities under which you hold your securities, allocates this number to you. You will have a different number given to you from each registry, unless you apply for a CSN across all registries through a Broker. A holder number / share holder number is allocated to you when you become the owner of securities by any other means than buying them through a broker.

Either your CSN or a holder number will appear on your Securities Transaction Statements, Payment Advices and other related documents you may receive.

Faster Identification Number - FIN

This is a four-digit number, similar to your PIN on your bankcard. You will need to quote your FIN number to your Broker when you trade (buy or sell) your securities. It should be stored in a secure place and not be divulged for any other purpose than trading your shares.

Important note - your Common Shareholder Number (CSN), Holder Number and Identification Number (FIN) identify you as the owner of your securities and should be stored securely and separately.

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