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Learning about intermediary banks
Learning about intermediary banks
François Cosnier avatar
Written by François Cosnier
Updated over a week ago

What is an intermediary bank?

An intermediary bank (sometimes also called correspondent bank) provides services to another bank, serving as a middleman between the issuing bank and the receiving bank of an international wire bank transfer (also called wire transfer). Banks use intermediary banks as their agent abroad to complete payments that either start or end in other countries.

Adding an intermediary bank when creating a beneficiary describes the precise route a payment should follow to reach a beneficiary bank account.

Adding an intermediary bank also applies to iBanFirst clients, their clients, or their partners make to their iBanFirst accounts.

There is no intermediary bank for local or SEPA payments.


Exemple 1: Making a USD payment to a supplier in Vietnam

  • USD funds will go through a US bank. This bank is the intermediary bank

  • The intermediary bank will use a correspond bank in Vietnam to send USD funds in Vietnam

  • Once received, the correspondant bank will send USD funds to the beneficiary bank

  • Once received, the beneficiary bank will credit USD funds to your beneficiary bank account

Exemple 2: Receiving a USD payment from a client in Vietnam

  • The beneficiary bank account is your iBanFirst account

  • Your client MUST indicate iBanFirst's partner bank (ie, ING Belgium) as the intermediary bank

What are the risks of not adding an intermediary bank to send a payment?

Not adding an intermediary bank may result in:

  • Increased processing time

  • Funds not being received by the beneficiary

  • Funds being automatically converted to local currency (usually with a poor exchange rate) in case the currency of the payment is different from the currency of the country where the beneficiary bank is located

Where can I find iBanFirst's intermediary bank details?

You can find iBanFirst's intermediary bank on the Account > Account details screen:

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