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SWIFT Codes

The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) is a standard format of Bank Identifier Codes (BIC codes) approved by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).  It is the unique identification code of a particular bank. These codes are used when transferring money between banks, particularly for international wire transfers, and also for the exchange of other messages between banks.

The SWIFT code is 8 or 11 characters, made up of:

·   4 characters - Bank code (letters only)
·   2 characters - ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 country code (letters only)
·   2 characters - location code (letters and digits) (if the second character is '1', then it denotes a passive participant in the SWIFT network)
·   3 characters - branch code, optional ('XXX' for primary office) (letters and digits)

Where an 8-digit SWIFT code is given, it may be assumed that it refers to the primary office.

To locate a SWIFT code for a particular Bank, please go to the following website:

http://www.swift.com/biconline/

 

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