EBA Clearing has introduced additional settlement cycles in the STEP2 single euro payments area (SEPA) Credit Transfer (SCT) service. The three new cycles on the pan-European automated clearing house (PE-ACH) platform have further sped up end-to-end processing of SCT payments. The introduction of two new morning cycles and one additional evening cycle has brought the total number of STEP2 SCT settlement cycles to six.
This enhancement has put banks in a position to further optimise the processing flows for their mass payments: it gives them more flexibility and control with regard to scheduling their file sending throughout the day. It has also made it easier for participants to coordinate the sending and receiving of files with major counterparties. In order to enable same-day end-to-end processing for an increased percentage of SCTs, EBA Clearing additionally has postponed the last settlement cycle in the afternoon by one hour. It is now possible for participant banks to send payments that have been submitted by customers in the course of the morning or early afternoon to STEP2 until 14:00 CET; these payments are then delivered to the receiving banks on the same day, by 16:15 CET at the very latest.
“By increasing the number of settlement cycles in STEP2 SCT and allowing banks to schedule in which cycle a payment settles, we support our user banks in further improving their liquidity management. At the same time we smooth the flows of transactions through the day and allow banks to offer better service levels to their customers,” said John Broxis, director, STEP2 services, EBA Clearing. “There is an industry trend of payments getting faster and banks are channelling more and more credit transfers through SEPA infrastructures. Consequently, the flexibility offered by multiple settlement cycles throughout the day will continue to gain in importance.”
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