May Day Holiday Delays Payments in Eurozone

Changes related to the introduction of the single euro payments area (SEPA) meant that many Europeans expecting wages and other payments to reach their accounts on 1 May were left waiting as it was a public holiday in many countries across the euro zone.

The day was also a bank holiday for institutions of the European Union (EU) including the European Central Bank (ECB), which operates a banking settlement system across Europe.

As a result there was no clearing and settlement mechanism available to banks on 1 May to exchange interbank transactions and all payments that were due to reach accounts were subject to a 24-hour delay.

The Irish Payment Service Organisation (IPSO) which has been instrumental in introducing SEPA in the Republic claimed that the delays in money reaching accounts was “not a problem” and something that people would have to learn to live with.

There are also likely to be delays in posting transactions today as banks will not receive their payments until around 10am, when on a normal business day these are received by midnight and reach accounts from 7am.

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