The two principal CSDs that settle the trades in international debt securities are:
The debt securities, no longer issued in the definitive form (in paper certificates) are represented by global securities which are held in the CSDs. Direct customers of CSDs can hold their securities in one of the CSDs through securities accounts. This is known as a ‘book entry’ and ownership of an interest in a global note is evidenced by the book entry on the account. See Practice Notes: Debt securities market infrastructure—introduction and Clearing and settlement of securities—settlement for a full explanation of the systems and procedures involved.
Investors who do not have CSD accounts hold their securities through banks or brokers acting as custodians. For more information, see Practice Notes: Debt securities market infrastructure—introduction and Custody in the debt capital markets.