how bank-to-bank payments are made

When you create a payment in online banking, the instructions are grouped into a file with all other payments to the same financial institution. Bankwest then sends these payment files to the other financial institutions twice every business day (in the morning and evening).

When the other financial institution receives the file they credit the funds to the recipient's account, and at the end of the day the two banks settle the difference in the amount of debits and credits via the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA).

Here at Bankwest we process the payment file as soon as we receive it, meaning the funds should be in your account within the hour of validating the other financial institutions file.

Some financial institutions may also process the payment files immediately, but others may hold onto the funds for a period of time before crediting them. Some smaller financial institutions (e.g. credit unions) may use larger financial institutions to process their payment files on their behalf. This adds time to the payment process, and may result in a payment not being received by the intended recipient for up to 3 business days.

  • How quickly does Bankwest process incoming payments?

    Once Bankwest receives a payment file from another financial institution we process it immediately, which means the funds should appear in the recipient's account within the hour of validating the other financial institutions file.

  • I've made a payment to another financial institution but it hasn't been received

    If you’ve made a payment prior to the payment cut-off-time , your payment instructions will be sent to the other financial institution on the same day for processing.

    However, if you’ve made the payment after the payment cut-off time your payment instruction will be sent the next business day.

    If the payment was made less than 3 business days ago, it may still be waiting to be processed by the other financial institution. Some smaller financial institutions may use larger banks to process payments on their behalf before funds are credited to the recipient’s account.

    We can conduct a search request for payments made more than 3 business days ago, however fees and charges may apply.

  • A payment was made to my Bankwest account, but it hasn't been credited yet

    Bankwest processes payments to accounts immediately, so if the payment hasn't been credited yet it means we haven't received the payment file from the other financial institution.

    We recommend you contact them to find out what their payment cut off times are, whether the payment has actually been sent and whether the funds are sent through an intermediary bank as this could cause delays.

  • Why are payments not processed on weekends and public holidays?

    Payments between financial institutions are only processed on days when the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) is open as all payments must be settled through the RBA at the end of each day.

    The RBA is closed on weekends, national public holidays and some state public holidays (e.g. NSW holidays) which prevents us from settling on those days. However, Bankwest still process payments on WA public holidays when the RBA is still open.

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