A SWIFT code is an international bank code that identifies particular banks worldwide. It’s also known as a Bank Identifier Code (BIC). Swift Code is a standard format of Bank Identifier Codes (BIC) and it is unique identification code for a particular bank. These codes are used when transferring money between banks, particularly for international wire transfers. Banks also used the codes for exchanging other messages between them.
The registrations of Swift Codes are handled by Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (“SWIFT”) and their headquarters is located in La Hulpe, Belgium. SWIFT is the registered trademarks of S.W.I.F.T. SCRL with a registered address at Avenue Adèle 1, B-1310 La Hulpe, Belgium.
The Swift code consists of 8 or 11 characters. When 8-digits code is given, it refers to the primary office. The code formatted as below:-
AAAA BB CC DDD
- First 4 characters – bank code (only letters)
- Next 2 characters – ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 country code (only letters)
- Next 2 characters – location code (letters and digits) (passive participant will have “1” in the second character)
- Last 3 characters – branch code, optional (‘XXX’ for primary office) (letters and digits)
The format of Swift Code is as follows:-
|Bank Code||Country Code||Location Code||Branch Code|