Demystifying MT103

3 mins
February 10, 2022

Machnet Technologies Inc.

MT103 Swift payment

MT103 is merely a payment receipt. However, this can be a nightmare for your organization's accounting and transaction monitoring team if you are involved in cross-border payments so we want to demystify what MT103 is so we all understand the basics behind it. 

At Machnet, our treasury team’s day starts with cross-border payment and ends with the same. So, we thought to share about MT103 that may help clarify what MT103 is and its importance when a payment message is used for cross-border payments. 

What is MT103?

MT103 is a standard SWIFT payment message used for cross-border payment. If you are sending funds from one country to another the MT103 message is used so the party receiving the fund can understand where the money is coming from. Regardless of if you love or hate SWIFT payment, we can’t live without it in the global payment ecosystem. This might soon change as we see the adoption of digital currency payment and much more, however, let’s not go there today. 

Common questions and concerns in international payments

When we send money internationally, we all have a few questions in mind, especially accountants:

  1. Ok, I hit the send button but did the money go?
  2. Do I need to call the bank to ask if there are any issues?
  3. My vendor may call me middle of the night if they didn’t receive the money
  4. Did the fund get stuck at the correspondent banking channel? 
  5. Did my recipient receive the exact money in the local currency that I was supposed to send since my bank did not tell me the exchange rate that will be applied?

The role of MT103 in cross-border payments

MT103 is at your disposal as a rescue pilot to answer all the above questions. Think of MT103 as your receipt when you go to a restaurant and they will bring a bill with all the details that are required for you to check the total before giving your card for the payment. 

What does an MT103 include?

MT103 is a globally recognized receipt that includes:

  1. Date 
  2. Reference Number
  3. Amount
  4. Currency 
  5. Sender detail ( Name, address, etc.)
  6. Beneficiary ( Name, address, etc.) 
  7. Bank information of d) and e) 
  8. Correspondent bank details, if any

Once you provide all of the above information, you don’t need to worry about lost or delayed payment. This is the Proof of the Payment. While you're sending cross-border payments, this is the way you can trace your payment if it’s missing or delayed for any reason.

Understanding IMAD/OMAD numbers

Now, let’s chat about IMAD/OMDA since it’s related to the wire transfer. 

IMAD/OMAD numbers are used to trace the wire transfer. These are input and output messages. It is a unique number given to each Fedwire payment when using a federal reserve bank service and can be used to investigate and trace wire transfers.These are required from your bank in the event that we have to reach out to the funding provider. These numbers are a combination of date, source identifies ( alpha-numeric) and sequential numbers in a particular format. If requested, your bank will be able to provide the information after the funds have been wired. 

MT103 vs. Domestic Payments

Don’t confuse MT103 with the domestic payment because it doesn’t get routed through SWIFT since you will be using local payment rails and don’t need to worry about the MT103 requirement, however, the information you might have to provide for domestic FedWire can cross-path. 

Learn more and get involved with Machnet

If you’re looking to learn more about cross-border payment and would like to understand how Machnet can help you tap into cross-border payment, reach us through or contact us.

If you are super interested in the building with us, we are also hiring!

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