How to Find a Routing Number on a Check
If you’ve ever needed to send money to another bank, fill out an IRS direct deposit form or complete a wire transfer, you may have been asked for your routing number. A routing number is a nine-digit code that uniquely identifies banks and credit unions in the United States. It’s also used to verify the location of your bank account and to allow your financial institution to process transactions quickly.
Routing numbers can be found on paper checks issued by your bank, and they’re used for a variety of purposes. They’re also a crucial part of ACH (Automated Clearing House) and Fedwire transfers.
A routing number can be found on the bottom of a check in an odd font called magnetic ink character recognition, or MICR. The odd-looking font allows your check to be processed more quickly.
Your bank’s routing number is the first set of numbers on the long line that appears along the bottom edge of your check. That line contains your routing number, account number and check number in order.
There are three parts to a routing number: the Federal Reserve Routing Symbol, the ABA institution identifier and a check digit. Each part of the number is arranged in a particular way to prevent transaction errors.
The first four digits of the number are the Federal Reserve Routing Symbol, which can be 00 or XXXX. The second four digits are the ABA institution identifier, which can be 001 through 999. The last two digits are the check digit, which is either 0212-00025 or 0212-0002.
Your bank’s routing number can also be found on your account statement. That’s an easier way to keep track of your accounts and make sure you have the correct information.
You can also find your routing number online, but it may be hard to read on a screen. Some financial institutions have their routing numbers printed on cards, while others have them on paper in a separate box or on the back of the statement.
The most common way to find a routing number is by looking at the bottom of a check. That’s because they’re usually printed on the bottom left corner of your checks, and most banks include a routing number in each check that they issue to their customers.
A routing number is printed on a standard check in both a fraction form and in the MICR (magnetic ink character recognition) form. The fraction form is often printed at the bottom of a check, and includes fewer digits than the MICR form.
Most banks have a separate routing number for processing checks, and a different one for transferring money via ACH and Fedwire. This is because they have a certain amount of control over how and when these codes are used, so it’s important to have them both on hand.
You’ll also need to know your routing number when you file taxes or receive a tax refund. The IRS and your state’s tax commission need your bank’s routing number in order to process your federal return.