Swift code or also commonly known as BIC Code is a standard format to uniquely identify a bank, financial institution and non-financial institution. This standard approved by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). BIC stands for Business Identifier Codes.
The codes are widely used when transferring money between banks, particularly for international wire transfers or telegraphic transfer. Other uses include to transmit messages between financial institutions and banks.
The Swift code can be either 8 or 11 characters long, and 8 digits code refers to the primary office. The code consists of 4 separate section, and the format arrange in the following manner;
AAAA BB CC DDD
- The first 4 characters ("AAAA") specify the institution. Only letters.
- The next 2 characters ("BB") specify the country where the instituions located. The code follows the format of ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 country code.
- The next 2 characters ("CC") specify the instiution's location. Can be letters and digits. Passive participants will have "1" in the second character,
- The last 3 characters ("DDD") specify the institution's branch. This section is an optional. A 'XXX' refers to a primary office. Can be letters and digits.
Banks use SWIFT for international transfers, but it's not the most efficient or cost-effective solution. When you receive or send a wire transfer internationally with your bank, you might get a bad exchange rate, and pay high hidden fees as a result. We recommend using TransferWise to get a great rate and low, transparent fee every time. Because of their innovative solution, TransferWise can be cheaper and faster than the bank, and just as safe.
There are 2 types of Swift Codes, namely Live & Passive Codes. The Live Codes are for institutions who are actively connected to the Swift Network while Passive Codes are used for manual transactions.
Swift Code registrations and management are the responsibility of "Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication" (“SWIFT”) which 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 countries below are the top 30 world's largest economies ranked by World Bank. Click on the country name to find out Swift Codes for that country.