What is CHESS?

CHESS stands for Clearing House Electronic Subregister System. It’s the computer system used by the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) to record shareholdings and manage the settlement of share transactions.

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  • Benefits of CHESS sponsorship with CommSec
  • There are two ways for shares to be held
  • How do I become CHESS sponsored?

Benefits of CHESS sponsorship with CommSec

Having your shares CHESS sponsored by CommSec means you can:

  • automatically keep track of your portfolio and its market value online
  • immediately place sell orders online (because we have all the required information to place your order)
  • place a buy order without a deposit (if you have sufficient CHESS holdings already sponsored by CommSec)
  • update your personal information once with CommSec, rather than updating it multiple times with different share registries

There are two ways for shares to be held

  • CHESS sponsored shares - shares that are registered with a stock broker (like CommSec or another broker). CHESS sponsored shares are allocated a Holding Identification Number (HIN) by the broker.
  • Issuer sponsored shares - shares that are managed by the issuer's share registry. Issuer sponsored shares can be traded through any broker, as long as conditions set out by that broker are met. Issuer sponsored shares are allocated a Securityholder Reference Number (SRN).

If you want to transfer issuer sponsored shares to become CHESS sponsored shares, you'll need to transfer the shares from the share registry over to CommSec.

How do I become CHESS sponsored?

CHESS sponsorship is automatically applied to all newly opened CommSec Share Trading Accounts. If your account is CHESS sponsored, it will have a unique HIN number.

If your account is not CHESS sponsored, you can apply for CHESS sponsorship by completing a CHESS sponsorship request form. This form is mainly used for transferring issuer sponsored shares to CHESS, but it can also be used to apply for CHESS sponsorship even if you're not transferring any shares.

You need to fill in Section 1 (CommSec account details) & Section 4 (Agreement). When you're done, please email your form to: CSL-IssuerToChess@cba.com.au

We will aim to process your request within two business days. You will receive a notice from ASX Settlement Pty Ltd (ASX Settlement) to confirm that CommSec is your CHESS sponsor. All future trades will settle under your CHESS sponsorship with CommSec.


© Commonwealth Securities Limited ABN 60 067 254 399 AFSL 238814 (CommSec) is a wholly owned but non-guaranteed subsidiary of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124 AFSL 234945. CommSec is a Market Participant of ASX Limited and Cboe Australia Pty Limited, a Clearing Participant of ASX Clear Pty Limited and a Settlement Participant of ASX Settlement Pty Limited.

The information on this page has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. For this reason, any individual should, before acting on this information, consider the appropriateness of the information, having regards to their objectives, financial situation or needs, and, if necessary, seek appropriate professional advice.

CommSec does not give any representation or warranty as to the accuracy, reliability or completeness of any content on this page, including any third party sourced data, nor does it accept liability for any errors or omissions.