If you manage the accounting function for your business, you have probably been asked to provide bank codes at one time or another, especially if you send or receive bank wires. Having previously worked at a bank myself, I can understand how confusing these can be. Here are some commonly used codes and what they mean.
Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) is a network used by financial institutions worldwide (banks, insurance companies, brokerages, investment companies, and such) in order to facilitate a secure method in exchanging financial transactions.
SWIFT Bank Identifier Code (SWIFT BIC) is a combination of 8 or 11 characters used to identify a financial institution. The receivers of international wire transfers are required to have a SWIFT BIC.
International Bank Account Number (IBAN) is a 34-character combination of the receiver’s bank and account number. This was originally designed for European banks, but have now been utilized worldwide.
Routing Transit Number (RTN) is also known as American Bankers Association or ABA. This is a nine digit code used in the US, which appears on the bottom of checks to identify the bank from which it was drawn. It is usually the first set of numbers shown at the bottom of checks.