Skip to Navigation
Skip to Content

  • Login

Clearing Systems

Did you know

New Zealanders make more than six million payments daily, estimated to be worth more than $35 billion each day.

Did you know

Payments NZ has recently delivered a project to support the industry through its progression to mobile payments.

Paper Clearing System

This system sets all the requirements (rules / standards) for how financial institutions process cheques and a few other paper based payment instruments.

If you hand over a cheque to a person/business, and they use a different bank/financial institution to you, the two financial institutions have to 'talk' to each other in order to pass the relevant information to each other regarding that cheque (interchange). The money also needs to be passed from one financial institution to the other (settlement).

PCS's rules and standards set out how this actually happens in practice.

This includes components like:

  • the layout of a cheque,
  • how the images of a cheque are exchanged (instead of physically transporting the cheque around the country like they used to do),
  • the data format for transaction information,
  • how transaction data is exchanged
  • timeframes for interchange and settlement - what has to happen by when
  • how dishonours work - what information is exchanged, by when
  • contingency
  • operational contacts
  • how settlement occurs and by when

Associated Resources

  • PDFMICR Design Standards October 2012  (741KB)
  • PDFCheque Study Summary Report  (169KB)
  • Back to top

    Payments NZ Limited is committed to ensuring your privacy is protected.

    Any personal information you provide to us will be held securely. We will only use and disclose personal information we receive for the purpose it was provided for in accordance with the Privacy Act 1993 or when required by law. This site does not collect personal information except that provided by users through the contacts and subscriptions pages. You can request access to personal information held about you by Payments NZ and you can request to have any information we hold corrected.