Wire Transfer Definitions

Wire Transfer Definitions

ABA, IBAN, and SWIFT / BIC

Outgoing domestic wire transfers require an ABA.

Every effort should be made to obtain the SWIFT / BIC for all outgoing international wire transfers.

If the beneficiary bank is part of the European Community (see list following), the IBAN and SWIFT / BIC are required.

What is an ABA? (American Bankers' Association National Numeric System)

  • The ABA routing number is a unique, 9 digit identifying transit number assigned to each bank.

What is the IBAN? (International Bank Account Number)

  • The IBAN is a series of alphanumeric characters which uniquely identify an account held at a bank. It can be up to 34 characters long and contains a two-character country code, two check digits, and the basic bank account number. The basic bank account number identifies the bank as well as the account holder. In printed format, spaces are inserted for readability (i.e. DE16 5003 3300 0532 0130 00).

What is the BIC? (Bank Identifier Code)

  • The BIC is an 8-character code also known as the SWIFT address and is uniquely assigned to banks. Branch codes can be added to the BIC to further designate which branch of a bank should receive the SWIFT message. When a branch code is added, the BIC has 11 characters (i.e. BARCGB22 or DEUTDE3B400).

IBAN and SWIFT / BIC are REQUIRED on invoices (European Community)

The European Payments Council requires that all European banks provide their account holders with their IBAN and BIC. Additionally, the account holders are required to provide these two pieces of information on any documents used in cross-border invoicing.

 

IBAN

 

IBAN

 

IBAN

Country

Length

Country

Length

Country

Length

Andorra

24

Gibraltar

23

Norway

15

Austria

24

Greece

27

Poland

28

Belguim

16

Hungary

28

Portugal

25

Czech Republic

24

Iceland

26

Slovenia

19

Denmark

18

Ireland

22

Spain

24

Finland

18

Italy

27

Sweden

24

France

27

Luxembourg

20

Switzeroland

21

Germany

22

The Netherlands

18

United Kingdom

22