Question 2.1.2 Data Field (2)

Question 2.1.2 Data Field (2)

What is the format of BIC Codes?

The TRUM and XSD schema both show the BIC as being an 11 character field.

However, in the marketplace the BIC code is actually an 8 character reference, with an optional 3. And in ACER’s list of Participant’s

We suggest that the XSD be modified to allow BIC submission with a minLength of 8.


<xs:restriction base="xs:string">

<xs:maxLength value="11"/>

<xs:minLength value="118"/>

<xs:pattern value="[A-Za-z0-9_]+"/>


As background, the BIC is made up by;

  • Business Party Prefix (4 Characters)
  • Country Code (2 Characters)
  • Business Party Suffix (2 Characters)
  • Optional Branch Identifier (3 Characters)

Numerous instances of 8 character BIC codes in the marketplace.  A small selection below for reference:









Suggestion is that in order to successfully use BIC within the ACER XML schema, the validation on BIC should allow for a minimum of 8 characters (currently 11) and a maximum of 11.


Our understanding is that the SWIFT code is 8 or 11 characters long. According to ISO 9362:2009 (dated 2009-10-01).

The SWIFT code is 8 or 11 characters long, made up of:

  • 4 letters: Institution Code or bank code.
  • 2 letters: ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 country code
  • 2 letters or digits: location code

If the second character is "0", then it is typically a test BIC as opposed to a BIC used on the live network.

If the second character is "1", then it denotes a passive participant in the SWIFT network.

If the second character is "2", then it typically indicates a reverse billing BIC, where the recipient pays for the message as opposed to the more usual mode whereby the sender pays for the message.

3 letters or digits: branch code, optional ('XXX' for primary office)

Where an 8-digit code is given, it may be assumed that it refers to the primary office and therefore should be reported as: