Indian Financial System Code (IFSC) Search









Indian Financial System Code or IFSC is a 11 characters long, unique code that is assigned to every bank that operates in India and supports NEFT or RTGS transactions. IFSC codes start with Alphabets that refer to the bank and is followed by numbers that uniqyely identify a branch. To find the IFSC code of a bank, you can either select the bank from the form above or directly click on a bank from the list below.

All Banks

Not only can you find IFSC code of any branch, but also you can find address, contact number and MICR code on YourNav. We have more than 1,40,000 IFSC codes in our database, with more than 200 Banks and 36 States and Union terroritories.

Example of an IFSC code - SBIN0003857. The first 4 letters - SBIN refer to the bank name that is State Bank of India in this case, and the 7 digits uniquely identify the SBI Branch.

Since you are reading this article, in all likelihood, you are a part of the banking system of India. Financial inclusion is necessary. We all know that. Exclusion only leads to numerous problems, which often threaten our very survival. How such a threat presents itself in front of us remains a topic outside the scope of this article. So, we will focus on what we want to – the IFSC.

If you have used money transfer facility of your bank through the digital corridor, you have come across this word or term called IFSC. Perhaps, you never focused on it. But, here is the thing – none of the two electronic or digital transactions (namely, NEFT, and RTGS) can ever happen without the IFSC. So, what is IFSC? Why is it so important? How can you decode it? How gives this code?

There are, maybe, many such questions that come to your mind now and then. In this write-up, we are going to answer those questions one at a time.

A quick warning is in order! You may find this explanation a bit difficult to understand because we will use some banking terminology as we proceed. However, at the very end of this narration, there is a glossary of terms with their relevant explanations. So, if somewhere in between, while reading this detailed account of IFSC, feel free to jump to the glossary section. Your curious mind will be satiated. We promise!

Without further ado, let us get started.

What is IFSC?

You don’t recall reading a word like IFSC in your English classes, do you? How can you? IFSC is not a word at all! It is an abbreviation, and it stands for Indian Financial System Code. Yes, it is a code. So, if you are calling its IFSC code, you are misusing the term. You say, IFSC because ‘C’ means code. You do not need to append it separately. You may, however, use the term ‘IFS Code.’

IFSC follows a standard format. Now take a look at the following:

Notice carefully. IFS Code has a particular format. Here is the breakdown of the format:

Are you looking for an example? Great! Take a look at the IFS Code of State Bank of India’s Ashok Vihar branch located in the district of New Delhi:

S

B

I

N

0

0

1

1

5

4

6

Alphabetic Code

Zero

Numeric Code

Represents Bank Code

Reserved

Represents Branch Code

Compare the table above with the image above. The input in the table follows the format you see in the image above.

Now, do you understand the format of the IFSC properly?

We will assume you do and move forward.

In case you think that we are simply exposing the IFSC code of one of SBI’s branches, let us clarify that these codes are readily available on the official website of Reserve Bank of India. You can look up the codes easily.

Where to Find IFSC?

IFS Codes are readily accessible for all banks that participate in inter-bank electronic fund transfer. Reserve Bank of India displays all IFS Codes of all participating banks on its official website. Using RBI’s website is the easiest way to grab all codes at one.

However, it is not the only method. You are free to use other methods. Here is a quick list of all methods of accessing IFSC of your bank, and in particular, your banking branch:

Use any method you want. All you need is the code, and you will get it easily.

IFS Code Features

You must understand that every IFS Code is unique. So, if you are looking at two IFS Codes of two different branches of the same bank, those codes will be different. Only the first four (4) characters and the fifth (5th) character will match for those two codes.

Why like that?

Simple! First four characters represent the bank code. SBI, for example, uses the bank code SBIN, and the fifth character is always Zero. So, SBIN0 (the first five characters) will be identical for the IFS Codes of the two branches. The remaining six (6) characters will differ.

If you are looking at IFS Codes of two branches of two different banks, only the fifth character will match. Everything else will be different.

Every bank and its corresponding branches that participate in NEFT or RTGS transactions (electronic fund transfer) using RBI’s network will have IFS Code. If you are using NEFT or RTGS, there is absolutely no way to accomplish such transactions without IFSC.

How NEFT Works With IFSC?

NEFT is a system of transferring funds across the nation. Reserve Bank of India, which is India’s apex bank, supports this form of funds transfer. NEFT, just like IFSC, is an acronym or abbreviation. NEFT stands for National Electronic Fund Transfer.

Who is allowed to use NEFT? Here is the complete list:

The direction of payment is not at all restricted. The payment can go in any direction. An individual can pay to a firm or a corporate. A firm can pay to an individual or a corporate. A corporate can pay to an individual or a firm.

Similarly, transfers can take place between:

With NEFT, money can move from one account to another within a few minutes. However, depending on the time of transfer, it can also take a few hours or the transfer may be put on hold until next working day.

NEFT transfers will not allow moving large sums of money from one account to another. There is a maximum limit for NEFT transfers. Only small amounts or medium amounts can move between different bank accounts. While a maximum limit is present for NEFT, there is no such thing called minimum. Irrespective of the amount of funds you want to transfer, you can do so using NEFT. No amount is too small!

Time Taken for NEFT Transfers

In banking terminology, NEFT transactions have another name – ‘Settlements.’ These settlements take place every hour. On working days (weekdays), settlements start at 9 AM in the morning. Settlements stop at 7 PM. Here are the things you must remember:

NEFT transfers take place even on Saturdays, but there are only five (5) settlements on a Saturday. Settlements begin at 9 AM and end at 1 PM. If you send money using NEFT at 1:01 PM on a Saturday, the transfer of the settlement will not take place until Monday 9 AM. NEFT transactions do not go through on Sundays.

Movement of funds will take some time. Exactly how much time? It depends on the beneficiary bank. If the beneficiary bank takes 5 hours for processing, the funds will reflect in the beneficiary account 5 hours after the NEFT settlement from the remitting bank. If the beneficiary bank takes 1 minute, the funds will show in the destination account in just 1 minute after the beneficiary bank receives the funds. It is the processing speed of the beneficiary bank that is often the culprit for delays in fund transfer.

IFSC and NEFT – How They Work?

There are five (5) levels of processing in any NEFT transfer. Of these five levels, you can carry out the first level either manually (by filling in NEFT form) or electronically (through your online banking account). What are those five levels? Read on and figure out where IFSC fits in.

Level 1 (manual method):

Level 1 (online method):

Level 2:

The remitting bank (that is, your bank) will create a message for transfer. The bank will then send the message to NEFT service center.

Level 3:

Once the NEFT service center gets the messages from the remitting bank, the center will forward the same message to NEFT clearance department (RBI controls it). The service center will also inform the clearance department about the next available slot for settlement.

Level 4:

The NEFT clearance department will go through the message from the remitting bank. NEFT clearance department will now use all the details that you enter in NEFT form or online NEFT transfer details. IFS Code plays an important role here. If you don’t give IFSC, the NEFT clearance department will never know the bank branch where the money needs to move.

For example, you only state that the beneficiary’s account is with State Bank of India located in Delhi. You don’t mention the exact branch (that is, IFSC). What if the beneficiary has an account in Ashok Vihar branch and the NEFT clearance house assumes that the account is located in Anoopgarh or Aicholi or any other branch and sends the money to one of those two branches? The money will make a return trip to your account. It will never reach the beneficiary. So, IFSC is important, and NEFT settlements will fail without IFS Codes.

The NEFT clearance department will use the details and creates payment entries. The entries are:

Level 5:

The response request or acceptance message that the NEFT clearance department creates reaches the destination bank along with the transfer. The beneficiary bank then processes the transfer and credits the amount to the beneficiary account. The bank also responds to the NEFT clearance department stating that the payment or the transfer is accepted and processed.

That is how NEFT works with the help of IFS Codes.

How RTGS Works With IFSC?

RTGS is another form of electronic fund transfer. RTGS is an acronym for Real Time Gross Settlements. This system deals only with high-value transactions over two lakhs. As the name suggests, the transactions take place in real time. The part of the name – gross settlement – means that all payments settle on a one-to-one basis. The term ‘settlement’ in particular means that payments once processed are irrecoverable.

Unlike NEFT, RTGS process payments on an individual basis. In NEFT payments are processed in a batch. So, if you are making RTGS payment, there will be no waiting period. The payment processing takes place immediately.

As before, the central bank stays in between to process all the payments. One good thing about RTGS is that once the remitting bank sends the money, the beneficiary bank has to credit the amount in the beneficiary account within 30 minutes. The maximum time a beneficiary bank can take to process the payment is 2 hours. Usually, the beneficiary bank processes the payments as soon as it receives the fund transfer message.

Like NEFT, RTGS too has a maximum limit. This maximum limit can differ from one bank to another. For instance, SBI has set the maximum limit for RTGS payments at INR 10 lakhs. HDFC Bank, on the other hand, has a limit of 25 lakhs if RTGS payment goes through online banking. If the payment goes through the offline channel, that is, through HDFC bank branch (you manually go to the branch), there is no upper limit set.

So, the amount of time a bank takes and the amount of money transfer a bank allows will vary depending on your bank.

Even in the case of RTGS, IFSC is very important. The central bank will send (credit) the money to the beneficiary bank along with transfer acceptance message. The beneficiary bank will check the IFS Code in the message to know the exact branch where the beneficiary has the account.

So, IFSC is imperative for accurate money transfer through an electronic medium.

What About IMPS?

IMPS or Immediate Payment Service is a third type of electronic fund transfer. We did not mention IMPS in the beginning. Our apologies.

IMPS is similar to RTGS in the sense that payment sent by a remitting account is received immediately by the beneficiary account. There is no RBI interference in between. IMPS payment works through ATM servers of banks. RBI server is not involved. Since RBI server is not present in between, you can make IMPS payments throughout the year any time you wish. Holidays do not matter at all. If the account you have has enough money in it, you can go for IMPS transfers.

If you need to transfer money in the middle of the night, say 3 AM, you can happily do so. The beneficiary will instantly receive the money in his or her account at 3 AM in the night.

Despite the speed and year-round availability, IMPS payments still require IFSC to work. The same argument applies in this case as well. What will happen if the beneficiary bank doesn’t know the branch where the beneficiary has an account? The money you send will make a round trip to your account. It will never reach the account of the beneficiary.

Conclusion

IFS Codes work as unique identifiers. Try to understand it this way. You need to meet a friend who is waiting for you at the Barista coffee shop at a said location. Unfortunately, there are two Barista shops on two sides of the road. The one in which your friend is waiting has a jewelry shop next to it. The other Barista shop has a Bata showroom next to it. The jewelry shop becomes the unique identifier that you can use to know which Barista shop you must enter to meet your friend. IFS Codes work the same way. They are unique identifiers allowing the beneficiary bank to know which branch has the account of the beneficiary.

Glossary

Beneficiary Bank – In banking terminology, a beneficiary bank is the one that receives money.

Remitting Bank – In banking terminology, a remitting bank is the one that sends the money.

Debit – In finance, debit means a deduction of financial assets (can be money or financial bonds) from an account.

Credit – In finance, credit means a deposit of financial assets (can be money or financial bonds) into an account.