Bank statement abbreviations

What do they mean?

bank statement abbreviations

Know your BACS from your CHAPS, your APRs from your DDRs? There can be 100s of gibberish terms found on bank and credit card statements and utility bills.

This guide gives a full rundown, including table breakdowns of popular gobbledygook, and reveals how to query terms on itemised bills and bank statements if they remain unclear.

In this guide

The jargon explained

A table is below of jargon that you may have come across on your bank or utility statements. We've tried to include as many popular terms as possible – yet this isn't an exhaustive list.

Quick question

  • Unfortunately not. As there's no set standard for statement abbreviations, terms are likely to differ slightly across different banks or utility providers. For instance, the long-winded 'Clearing House Automated Payment System' term is referred on a Barclays bank statement as the acronym CHAPS, while on a NatWest statement it'll be known simply as CHP.

    However, most terms are generally shortened in similar ways, so distinguishing between them shouldn't be too difficult.

Abbreviations on bank, credit card or utility statements

ABBREVIATION WHAT IT STANDS FOR DESCRIPTION
APR Annual Percentage Rate A rate of interest payable over a year. See APR examples.
BBP or BP Bill Payment Payment of a bill.
BAC or BACS Bankers' Automated Clearing Services Electronic system to make payments directly from one account to another. Can take up to three working days to clear.
BGC Bank Giro Credit The deposit of cash or a cheque in a bank branch.
BSP Branch Single Payment Bill or third-party payment made within a branch.
CDL Career Development Loan A Government loan received for career development. See Career Development Loans.
CDM Cash & Deposit Machine Cash machines that can be used to process pay-ins, bill payments and withdrawals.
CHG Charge Charge regarding a transaction.
CHAPS or CHP Clearing House Automated Payment System Electronic transfer for large payments between accounts sent and received on the same day.
CHQ Cheque Document that orders payment of money from a bank account to another person or organisation.
COR Correction Correction regarding a transaction error.
CRE Credit payment Credit added to your account.
CSH Cash Cash paid into your account.
CUI Centralised Unpaid In (Unpaid Cheque) Cheque that has failed to clear.
CWP Cold Weather Payment Government payment to qualifying households during periods of cold weather. See if you qualify: Benefits check-up.
D/D or DDR Direct Debit Regular payment of a fixed or variable amount to a third party or some savings accounts.
DIV Dividend Payment to your account from shares you hold.
DR Account Overdrawn or Debit Item / Debit Balance An indication on your statement to show that your balance is less than zero. If needed, see Debt Problems.
DWP Department for Work and Pensions Deposit into your account by the Department for Work and Pensions.
ERTF Exchange Rate Transaction Fee Fee for the use of a card at a cash machine or POS (Point Of Sale machine) abroad. You can avoid these in future – see Travel Credit Cards.
FPI or FP Faster Payments Inwards A 'faster' payment – made using the 'Faster Payments' electronic system – received from another account.
FPO Faster Payments Outwards A 'faster' payment – made using the 'Faster Payments' electronic system – sent to another account.
IBAN International Bank Account Number Usually required for international money transfers when making a payment between international bank accounts. See Sending Money Abroad.
IBP Inter-Branch Payment Transfer between accounts at different bank branches.
IMO International Money Order Used to make payments abroad. See Sending Money Abroad.
INT Interest Credit or debit on your account associated to interest earned or incurred on your balance.
ISA Individual Savings Account A tax-free savings account. See Top Cash ISAs.
ITL International Transfer of money from your UK account to one abroad.
NDC Non Dividend Counterfoil A payment to your account from shares held by you.
OTR Online Banking Transaction Transaction carried out using online banking.
POC Post Office Counters Transaction carried out over a post office counter.
POS Point Of Sale / Debit Card Transaction A purchase made with your debit card, eg, at a retailer.
REV Reversal A standing order or direct debit that has been returned.
SAL Salary Salary paid into your account.
S/O or STO Standing Order Regular payment of a fixed amount from your account to another account or a third party.
SBT Screen Based Transaction A transaction processed by a bank branch on your behalf.
TEL Telephone Banking A transaction carried out using telephone banking.
TFR Transfer Transfer of money between accounts.
TLR Teller Transaction A transaction carried out using a bank branch.
UNP Unpaid A cheque credited to your account that was not paid in at your account-holding branch or bank.

Organisation-specific jargon

There are organisations that may leave a mark on your bank, credit card or utility statement by using unique abbreviations that only apply to themselves or specific products or services. We've included some terms below that MSE users have specifically searched for in our forum.

ORGANISATION ABBREVIATION WHAT IT STANDS FOR DESCRIPTION
Adyen Adyen UK LTD Electronic payment processing company Adyen processes payments on behalf of companies selling products and services via the internet.
Bet365 B365 Internet Bet365 Gambling website.
Buchanan Clark and Wells BCW BCW debt collection company Debt collection agency. If needed, see Debt Problems.
Cassava Enterprises or Virtual MaSerIRL Cassava Enterprises or Virtual MaSerIRL 888.com / Wink Bingo Gambling website.
Coral Cl Ltd Coral Interactive Gambling website.
Vodafone CFU Call Forward Unconditional Found on Vodafone statements. A charge relating to incoming calls that have been redirected to another number.
Domestic & General Services DGS / RPP Domestic & General Services / Regular Payment Plan Direct Debit Warranty provider taking a direct debit from your account. See Free Warranties.
UK Government EESA Enhanced Employment Support Allowance You can get EESA if your ability to work is limited by ill-health or disability. See if you qualify: Benefits check-up.
JPMorgan Bank and PayPal JPMC A payment to a PayPal account from your bank PayPal uses JPMorgan (a large American bank) to process its transactions.
Paddy Power PP Phones Paddy Power Gambling website.
Payforit Payforit Brand allowing consumers to make payments via their phone on behalf of several mobile providers Some MoneySavers have experienced issues with Payforit: see feedback thread.
Qmee Qmee Cashback provider Third-party provider offering cashback for internet searches and signing up to online offers. See Make Money Online.
William Hill WHO Internet William Hill Online Gambling website.

This guide is meant to help identify hard-to-understand abbreviations. As such, any organisations included in our glossary above does not signify an endorsement from MoneySavingExpert.com.

Always query unidentified terms

If you find a term on your bank statement or itemised bill that isn't listed above, it's important to check it. The best way is to contact your bank or utility provider directly via secure messaging on internet banking or over the telephone.

If choosing the latter, ensure you don't pay through the nose by using premium-rate phone numbers. See our Say No To 0870 guide.

Alternatively, you may wish to post or search the MSE Forum
where fellow MoneySavers may be able to help.

Why check?

There are two main reasons why you should check your bank statements...

Money bag icon

Make budgeting easier

With contactless spending on the rise and online statements becoming the norm, keeping track of your finances should be easier than simply spending with cash. That said, getting on top of a budget is a challenging task for many and if you can't identify statement acronyms, it's nigh on impossible.

Unclear jargon can cause issues with budget planning – a headache if you're on the verge of going overdrawn, for example.

Identify fraudulent transactions

Fraud is often difficult to spot before it's too late. However, never assume an unknown charge on your bank statement is legit. Fraudsters can hit you for large or low amounts, and often favour hard-to-understand jargon to commit their crimes. Grasping bank-statement terms is an effective way of spotting suspicious transactions early.

Thankfully, banks are legally responsible for refunding fraudulent transactions, unless it's proved a customer was grossly negligent. But it's important to check yourself, as unauthorised transactions not identified may never be refunded. See ID Fraud Protection.

SPOTTED OUT OF DATE INFO/BROKEN LINKS? EMAIL: BROKENLINK@MONEYSAVINGEXPERT.COM