FASTER settlement is a New Zealand-based financial settlement system operated by the New Zealand Exchange (NZX). It is based on the principles of delivery versus payment with simultaneous irrevocable transfer of securities and cash. FASTER is not a full central securities depository (CSD), because it does not record the holdings of all the shareholders. Only holdings belonging to participants are recorded in FASTER, holdings related to individual shareholders who are not participants are delegated to a number of registries.

The alternative settlement system in New Zealand is NZClear (previously known as Austraclear) system operated by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand.


FASTER settlement system was launched in May 1998 when the exchange moved to fully automated clearing and settlement of trades. This was after regional trading floors had been closed and all stocks were traded electronically since 1991.[1]

In 2008, The Reserve Bank of New Zealand characterised the FASTER system as "becoming obsolete" [2]


Participants include stockbrokers and financial institutions. Each participant has a Faster Transfer Account (FTA) where stock is held pending delivery to other participants or to owned accounts.


Share registries are connected to FASTER via electronic links. Stock may be transferred for the benefit of a non-participant, by means of Client transfer. A transfer message is sent by a broker to FASTER, to transfer between the client and the broker's FTA. The transfer message is passed to the registry, who then updates the stock register. The shareholders are identified by a Common Shareholder Number (CSN). Outward transfers are protected by means of a FASTER identification number (FIN). This number is like a PIN, known only to the shareholder, and passed to the broker during a sale.


  1. ^ "New Zealand Exchange Limited (NZX)". NZX. Retrieved January 26, 2016.
  2. ^ "Reserve Bank deals serve to NZX over settlement system comments". NBR.