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Deciphering the Abbreviations and Terms on Your Bank Statements

As more and more banking options are available online, fewer and fewer people choose to receive paper bank statements every month, for businesses or those with multiple bank accounts, however, these statements are important to managing finances.

Unfortunately, these statements are not always simple to read and understand. Some banks tend to include vague, misleading, or complicated information and sometimes even hidden fees. It might even feel like there is a secret banking language that only financial institutions can read. The truth is, these abbreviations all have distinctive meanings–either on your paper statements or your online accounts–that tell you important information about your accounts and transaction history. 

Bank Statement Buzzwords and Abbreviations

There can be many abbreviations on your bank statements. Different transactions are categorized to help organize your account and prevent fraudulent charges. Let’s take a look at some of the most common below:

APR: The Annual Percentage Rate of an account over a year

ATM: Automated teller machine transactions 

ATM RFD: ATM refunds

BBP or BP: This identifies a bill payment

BAC or BACS: Bankers Automated Clearing Services – make payments directly from one account to another 

CDM: Cash Deposit Machine – bill payments or withdrawals completed at a cash machine

CHG: Charge related to a transaction

CHQ:  Transactions made using a paper cheque 

COR: Transaction error correction

CRE: A Credit added to your account

CSH: Cash deposited into your account

CUI: A check that has failed to clear your account

DWT: Department for Work and Pensions transaction

INT: Credit or debit on your account based on interest 

ISA: Individual Savings Account

ITL: International transfers

OTR: Online banking transaction

POS: Point of sale/debit card transactions

REV: A debit returned to your account

SAL: Salary paid (usually in the form of direct deposit)

S/O or STO: Regularly scheduled payment from your account to another account or a third-party app

SBT: Screen-based transaction–a transaction processed on your behalf by your bank

TEL: Telephone banking transaction

TFR: Transfer of funds between accounts

TLR: Teller transactions

If you find a term or transaction on your account that you cannot place or do not understand, it is always a good idea to contact your bank and discuss it. Not only will this help prevent any fraudulent charges, but it can help you with budgeting. You may identify a subscription or service that you no longer use but forgot to close. Or even more troubling, you may find you may be using a product that is not the best fit for your banking needs.

The experts and Falcon National Bank understand that this can be confusing. If you have any questions about your statement, weather you bank with us or not, give us a call.

Learn more about how important it is to understand your monthly statement, it could save you more than a few bucks! #feechallenge


  • Finacus Solutions | Nov 21st 2023 @ 1:43 AM

    Your blog is Clear, concise, and incredibly helpful in unraveling the complexities of banking jargon. A must-read for financial literacy seekers!

  • Stephen | Dec 4th 2023 @ 2:44 AM

    What does "Store_F" represent on my bank statement please

  • Finacus | Dec 13th 2023 @ 1:33 AM

    Your blog is clear explanations of complex terms make understanding financial statements a breeze. Thank you for simplifying this crucial information!

  • karen dickerman | Jan 15th 2024 @ 5:56 PM

    does a minus next to an amount represent the sale or a credit

  • Falcon National Bank | Jan 16th 2024 @ 3:14 PM

    @Stephen: "Store_F" would be the stores location or "store number".

  • Falcon National Bank | Jan 16th 2024 @ 3:20 PM

    @karen dickerman: if this is on a credit card statement and there is a negative/minus sign next to the balance, that means that the credit card company owes you money. You either overpaid your balance, or made a return etc.

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