What is an 'In Street Name'
An in street name is a brokerage account where the customer's securities and assets are held under the name of the brokerage firm, rather than the name of the individual who purchased the security or asset. Although the name on the certificate is not that of the individual, they are still listed as the real and beneficial owner and have the rights associated with the security.
BREAKING DOWN 'In Street Name'
It is more convenient for brokers to hold securities in street name due to the complexity of tracking each stock certificate to each individual. Almost all brokers hold securities electronically and all securities in a brokers name comprise their inventory. Any time a client needs to buy or sell stocks, the broker is readily able to allocate a portion of their inventory as required.
If brokers were to hold an inventory of paper securities, securities transactions would take more time. For example, if a client would like to sell their certificates, the broker would have to find the exact stock certificates owned by the client and send those securities back to the issuing company who would then change the names on the securities to that of the new owners.