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What is a swift code?

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SWIFT Code is a unique identification code for a particular bank and it is a standard format of Bank Identifier Codes (BIC).

SWIFT Codes are used for transferring money and messages between banks.
SWIFT Code is 8 or 11 characters for a bank. If SWIFT Code is 8 character code then it points to the primary branch/office
  • First 4 characters represents bank code.
  • Next 2 characters represents ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 country code.
  • Next 2 characters represents location code. (letters and digits) (passive participant will have "1" in the second character)
  • Last 3 characters represents branch code. These characters are optional. ('XXX' for primary office)

There are a great many SWIFT codes which correspond to various types of message. A SWIFT code is normally made up of the letters 'MT', and then a three digit number. The 'MT' simply stands for 'message type', and the numbers correspond to a certain type of SWIFT message. For obvious reasons these numbers are standardized globally and do not change between countries.

Please refer to the related links for more information.
On bic-code.nl/swift-code, you will find a list with BIC code. These numbers are used by countries like Belgium and the Netherlands. In other European countries, we speake about Nationale Sorteren Codes (NSC) in Ierland, Bankleitzahl ("BLZ Codes") in Germany etc.. You can also find an IBAN converter for your bank account number.
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