In making an international transfer, a company may choose between two types of international transfers: A SEPA transfer if the international transaction is to be made between two countries which are part of the European Union or EFTA countries (including Switzerland) or a SWIFT transfer ( Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) for international transfers to other countries.
Transfers are usually made by companies for the following reasons:
Between a SEPA and SWIFT transfer, costs vary greatly, along with turnaround and transmission delays. The cost of an international transfer in accordance with SEPA standards does not exceed that of a local transfer, that is to say, in most cases will be free. However a SWIFT transfer is more expensive because there is less standardisation and therefore involves more manual handling. In terms of time, the SEPA credit transfers are executed within a business day while SWIFT transfers may take up to several days, and for those same reasons, are more expensive. If you need to transfer funds quickly, try to favour SEPA as much as possible.
The fees the bank charges to a company that wants to make transfers, depend on the transfer type (SEPA or SWIFT) and any specific conditions that the company has with its bank.
When a company receives a SEPA transfer, there is in principle either no charge, or a very much reduced cost.
When a company issues a SEPA credit transfer, the cost will generally depend on the chosen mode of transmission (a company that issues his order on the Internet will generally pay less than by making the transfer over the counter or by telephone). Usually a fixed fee is applied.
SWIFT transfers have special characteristics: the issuer of the transfer of must decide how the transfer costs will be covered. These costs may be covered fully by the issuer, fully supported by the recipient of the transfer, or shared.
It is desirable to decide with the customer or supplier the type of expense that the company wishes to undertake within the framework of the business relationship. When this is not specified, “shared costs” should be favoured.
The cost of issuing a SWIFT transfer depends on the transfer amount, within a recognised minimum and maximum.
Finally, as part of a SWIFT or SEPA transfer, the bank may make additional charges, if, for example, the IBAN is incomplete or invalid, as well as any miscellaneous fees that depend on the situation and the general conditions of the bank.
How b-Sharpe can help: Being expert in Switzerland in international transfer operations and foreign exchange, b-Sharpe can advise on the best way to optimise your international transfers. With the good management of international transfers, suitable currency hedging and exchange rates amongst the best on the market, b-Sharpe can save you a lot of money. To be convinced, contact us!